4.8 tonnes of rubbish collected during beach clean-up
Kudat, Kota Kinabalu – More than 140 people from all walks of life gathered on Sunday, 28 October 2007, to tackle the piles of garbage that lined the beach in front of Sekolah Menengah St. Peter Kudat. The purpose of the beach clean-up, which was held in conjunction with Kudat Environmental Week, was to create awareness about the importance of waste management.
The stretch of beach confronting the school is bordered by two different environments – the immaculate grounds of Kudat Golf & Marina Resort on one side, and the stilt houses of Kampung Tanjung Kapor on the other.
As Lee Yoke Lee (Marine Biologist from WWF-Malaysia, and facilitator of the day) explained, the purpose of the event was not to pick up trash, but to spread the message about how each individual can help our environment by practicing good waste management. This includes separating recyclable products (such as plastic bottles, paper, glass, aluminium) from non-recyclable products.
The impact of recycling on the environment is considerable, as some products take a long time to decompose. Ms. Lee added "The effect of products on the environment can be gauged from its decomposition rate. Steel cans take 50 years to decompose, cigarette butts 80 years, and glass bottles do not decompose at all".
In the true spirit of caring for the environment, participants travelled from as far as Kota Kinabalu and the Crocker Range to attend the beach clean-up. Locals and foreigners supported the clean-up, coming from various groups including Ladies that Lunch, Scubazoo, Basel Christian Church of Malaysia, Belia Kampung Pengaraban, Kudat Golf & Marina Resort, Fire Brigade, Kudat Golf Club, St. Peter School, Kudat Library, Kudat Hospital, Lembaga Bandaran Kudat, and Sabah Parks.
The total amount of trash collected after two hours was approximately 4.7 tonnes of non-recyclable items, and 110kg of recyclable items consisting of glass, steel / aluminium and plastic bottles. A friendly football match was played between the local football team from Kampung Bawang Jamal and participants at the end of the day.
The beach clean-up was the final activity held as part of Kudat Environmental Week, jointly organised by WWF-Malaysia and Kudat Turtle Conservation Society (KTCS), supporting the national celebration of Malaysian Environment Week. The location of the clean-up, initially Bak Bak Beach, had to be changed because recent rains and high tides left Bak Bak Beach with very little trash.
For further information, please contact:
Marina Aman Sham, Communications Officer
Sulu-Sulawesi Marine Ecoregion Programme, WWF-Malaysia
Tel (office): +6088 262 420 / Mobile: 012 833 1976 / E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org