On the occasion of Earth Day today, it is interesting to reflect on how the new polymer notes released by the central bank of Mauritius are helping in the island’s go green initiative.

Besides being more practical for an island economy since they are waterproof, these durable notes also ensure that exhaustible resources such as paper are not wasted.

In addition, these notes are bringing renown to the island nation with their cutting-edge features. The Bank of Mauritius (BoM) recently announced that its polymer banknotes of Rs 25 and Rs 500 were shortlisted at the International Association of Currency Affairs (IACA) 2014 Technical Excellence in Currency Awards.

The IACA 2014 Technical Excellence in Currency Awards formed part of the agenda of the Banknote 2014 Conference, the ninth in a series of currency conferences focused on emerging trends and leading technologies in the banknote industry. It was held from 7 to 10 April 2014 in Washington, DC, concurrently with the International Monetary Fund/World Bank Spring Meetings.

Four currencies were shortlisted in the category of Best New Currency Feature or Product. Both banknotes, the Rs 25 note supplied by Oberthur Fiduciaire, and the Rs 500 one supplied by De la Rue, were selected for their outstanding security features.

In the final selection, the Rs 25 polymer banknote came out second to the currency supplied by manufacturer Louisenthal to Bank Al-Maghrib.

The polymer banknotes, which were unveiled in August last year by Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam, have been in circulation since then and have received favourable reviews from the public.

BoM is now proposing to scommission a tracer study on how polymer banknotes withstand domestic conditions, and evaluate the comparative performance of paper and polymer banknotes in circulation.

In the light of the findings of this study, the central bank may decide that other banknote denominations, besides Rs 500 and Rs 25, also move to polymer.

So, the next Earth Day may mark a bigger boost to Maurice Ile Durable, as more currency denominations join the polymer bandwagon.

Image (Mashable): Celebrating Earth Day today? Switch to the new notes! These durable notes ensure that exhaustible resources such as paper are not wasted.

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