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Tanganyika launches nature-friendly initiatives to increase sustainability

Tuesday, July 9 2019 1:15 PM
By Julia Stafford

Tanganyika Wildlife Park has implemented three new initiatives to expand their sustainable development with the goal of reducing plastics and contributing to the overall preservation of the natural world. These efforts include reusable cups, recycling bins and water fill stations—all of which are in full operation as of this week. Tanganyika’s mission aims to connect people to the natural world while taking part in preserving it.

 “Sustaining and being mindful of the environment by preserving resources is a priority for us,” said Assistant Director, Matt Fouts, “We are a small, family-owned facility, but each day we try our best to do our part in protecting our planet and the species that live on it.”

“By implementing these practices and continuing to make environmentally conscious and beneficial decisions, we are making a positive impact.”

First, Tanganyika led the charge by committing not to use single use plastic straws and lids with their drinks last year.  This year, Tanganyika took it step further by eliminating the single use cups in their pavilion.  Instead, they are offering a reusable 20 oz souvenir style cup with double wall insulation, animal theming, and a reusable straw.  Guests have two options when purchasing their souvenir cups: free refills on fountain drinks all day or free refills on all drinks all season long.

Option 1: $9.99— souvenir cup and free refills on fountain drinks all day.

Option 2: $14.99— souvenir cup and free refills on all drinks (includes fountain, smoothies, specialty coffees, ICEES—only exception is bottled drinks) all season long.

Offering reusable cups drastically decreases the usage of single-use cups, lids and straws. Additionally, Tanganyika uses only plant-based straws in their Kangabrew coffee shop.

The second step is Tanganyika’s implementation of recycling bins throughout the park.. After a lengthy process, and with the help of Waste Connections Wichita, Tanganyika is excited to finally have these in place.

“We are thrilled to have recycling bins at the Park in order to maximize our efforts in making the park as sustainable as possible,” stated Matt Fouts, “The recycling bins are a huge step for us, and we couldn’t have done it without the partnership with Waste Connections.”

Recycling minimizes the impact on landfills by re-using the materials rather than throwing them away. It also reduces the harmful chemicals and greenhouse gasses that are released from those landfills. Recycling uses much less energy than other methods of production, resulting in the preservation of natural resources.

The new waste and recycling bins can be found around the Park.  They were manufactured by Max-R in the USA and are made from recycled milk jugs. 

To complete the three-step approach, Tanganyika added water bottle filling stations to fountains located in the park about a month ago. The fill stations allow guests to fill up their own water bottle or souvenir cup rather than needing to purchase or bring multiple plastic water bottles.

“The water bottle filling stations have been a great addition to the park,” said Rachel Davis, Operations Captain for Tanganyika Wildlife Park, “They have been getting a lot of use which is great to see and many of our guests have expressed appreciation for them.”

Water bottle filling stations help reduce waste and provides a solution to lead contamination while supplying healthier and better tasting water.  

Tanganyika plans to continue to grow their sustainability efforts and procedures to ensure that the wildlife park is being maintained with as nature-friendly of an approach as possible.  

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