Clean up finds staggering amount of waste
More than 40 dedicated people took part in the International Coastal Cleanup, which Samoa commemorated last Saturday.
The local contribution to the global event took place at Taumeasina where participants included the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment Water Resource staff members, S.P.R.E.P staff members, members of Pualele Outrigger Canoe Club and members of the public.
From a distance of about 1.5km of beach covered, the amount of rubbish was staggering. Some 2177.5kgs of trash was collected, including 838 plastic bags, 465 food wrappers, 144 plastic forks, knives and spoons, 33 disposable nappies, 1008 plastic and Styrofoam food packaging, 39 shoes, 285 plastic drink bottles, 432 aluminum cans and more.
Samoa was among Pacific islands including Fiji, Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu who took part in the event.
All waste collected is stored in the Ocean Trash Index, having been recorded by item and by the Ocean Conservancy each year culminating in a global snapshot of the marine debris found across the world.
The aim of the Ocean Conservancy International Coastal Cleanup is to work with volunteers to collect waste from coasts and waterways, help determine the sources of debris and change the behaviours that help cause the problem.
Anthony Talouli, the Pollution Adviser of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (S.P.R.E.P) and the President of Pualele Outrigger Club was instrumental in the local clean up.
“These cleanup measures help ease the pressure on our planet and to record the waste collected,” he said in a statement issued by S.P.R.E.P prior to the day.
“Sadly the results from these cleanups are a reflection on how easy it is for many of us across the globe to dispose of our waste without a thought as to how it impacts on our environment.
“We really need to make a difference within our homes and then see the positive effects of this ripple across our planet.”
There is another clean up planned for Saturday 29 October 2016.