Next week's Johnny Clegg concert at Emmarentia Dam in Johannesburg will also be the launch of a battery recycling collection initiative – believed to be a first for South Africa.

The Old Mutual Encounters Concerts, the monthly music event at Emmarentia Dam in Johannesburg, will feature Johnny Clegg and supporting artists including Wrestlerish and The Allen Wood Project. It will start at 13h00 on Sunday 5 July.
The green initiative is in partnership with Pick n Pay and Uniross, the French-based rechargeable battery manufacturer.  Both companies have committed to creating a battery recycling centre at the event where people will be educated about their specific green initiatives. Visitors will be able to bring in their old domestic batteries which will be sent on for recycling.
Last year, Pick n Pay launched a joint initiative with Uniross, placing battery collection bins in all its stores.
“Pick n Pay was the first company to sign up for the programme and the first retailer to collect a significant volume of batteries. Pick n Pay collected over 30 000 used batteries in the first six months of the project,” says Uniross marketing manager Michael Rogers.
“A volume of 30 000 batteries represents a significant contribution to environmental protection.  This volume represents large amounts of harmful chemicals and metals, such as mercury and lithium, which have a damaging effect on the environment,” he adds.
Bronwen Rohland, sustainability director at Pick n Pay, adds: “The programme has been successful and is raising public awareness of the importance of recycling. This will be an ongoing initiative and we will be extending the battery and CFL light bulb recycling we currently offer in our stores to other products such as plastic bags and printer cartridges.”
Rogers says the used batteries collected are sorted at Uniross’ Midrand premises. From there they are either sent to France for recycling or disposed of locally in a safe landfill.
One AAA battery can pollute 500 litres of water and one cubic metre of land for 50 years. One rechargeable battery can replace up to 1 000 non-rechargeable batteries, making rechargeable batteries more environmentally friendly and more cost-effective for the consumer.
Tickets for the 5 July concert are available via www.tunegum.com.