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‘The Reclaimed Christmas Forest’ comes to Aotea Square

Media release

9December 2013

‘The Reclaimed Christmas Forest’ comes to Aotea Square with a key recycling message for the festive season

Christmas is taking on a whole new sustainable meaning this year with the creation of the Reclaimed Christmas Forest in Aotea Square as part of THE EDGE’s ‘Unwrapping Christmas’ between 9--21 December.

Over 5,000 recyclable plastic milk and soft drink bottles will be transformed into a sparkling forest comprising a seven metre tall Christmas tree surrounded by 12 smaller two metre trees.

The first installation of its kind to be constructed in New Zealand, the Reclaimed Christmas Forest aims to make people more aware of what they are throwing away this Christmas and holiday period.

“The holiday period provides a timely reminder that we are all custodians of our environment and as such we need to be reducing our waste and using good recycling practice at home, at work, and at play,” says Reclaim Sustainability Advisor Sian Flynn--Coleman.

“The installation should also remind people of the inherent value of recyclable products and the life span of recyclables which should never be just a one way journey to landfill.” “The festive season is when the country experiences around a 30% increase in waste sent to landfill which largely comprises of recyclables like plastic and cardboard packaging mainly from Christmas gifts, and packaging from the extra food and beverages consumed,” explains Sian.

The Reclaimed Christmas Forest initiative is in line with the Auckland Council’s vision for the city to have zero--waste status by 2040.

“The trees – made from everyday recyclable items -- are a reminder of this goal and of the importance for each Kiwi to do their personal bit in keeping recyclables out of landfill by practicing the three ‘Rs’ – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle” says Sian.

The Forest will be lit up in Aotea Square from sunset to 12am midnight every night from 9--21 December.

THE EDGE’s ‘Unwrapping Christmas’ will also feature concrete theatre performances, Bandstand Under the Stars, live music, food stalls and Christmas markets.

The initiative was inspired by Reclaim, and constructed by Architecture for Humanity, SKM, Engineers Without Borders, Reclaim and Brian Perry Civil.

Over 5,000 recyclable plastic bottles were supplied by Frucor, VISY, Fonterra and Reclaim.

Construction materials were supplied by Reclaim, Panda Visuals and ISL Industrial.

Lighting and design were supplied by Oceania and Marcus McShane.

Unwrapping Christmas is presented by THE EDGE, Regional Facilities Auckland, with support from the ASB Community Trust.


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