The recent coastal cleanup along Punta Villa Beach in Iloilo City has raised awareness and alarms volunteers and residents of Barangay Santo Niño Sur on the mounting waste problems, especially marine debris that ends up in oceans.
Approximately 700 kilograms of trash composed of PET bottles, fragments of styrofoam, single-use plastic utensils, tires, discarded fishing nets, ropes, plastic straws, discarded clothes and other wearables, among others, were collected during the said Coastal Clean Up activity last September 17, 2022.
The Conservation and Development Division (CDD) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Region 6 spearheaded the coastal cleanup event in celebration of the International Coastal Clean-up Day 2022.
The Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau-Coastal Resources and Ecotourism Research, Development and Extension Center (ERDB-CRERDEC) participated in the celebration along with the 150 volunteers comprising representatives from the Rotary Club of Iloilo Inc.; Reef Wanderers Conservation Advocates Inc.; barangay officials; residents of Barangay Santo Niño Sur, Arevalo; and the City Environment and Natural Resources Office of Iloilo City (CENRO-Iloilo City).
Ms. Mary Ann Astete and Ms. Cyndy Sol Rodrigo of CDD-DENR DENR 6 briefed participants before the event explaining the proper collection of trash and how recording is done using the Ocean Trash Data Form which is specifically designed to consolidate international data of trash collected along different coastal areas in the world.
Volunteer organizations and individuals around the globe engage in various activities to raise awareness about marine debris problems and the reduction of garbage and plastic pollution. ERDB-CRERDEC in coordination with the Environment and Management Bureau (EMB) Region 7 and the civil society groups in Cebu also conducted an Information, Education and Communication (IEC) Campaign in support of the ICC Day Celebration last September 13, 2022, at the People’s Hall in Talisay City, Cebu.
The International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) Day is an annual activity celebrated every 3rd Saturday of September in observance of the Global Coast Clean-Up Celebration which aims to engage people around the world to clean, remove the trash, and other debris from beaches, rivers, waterways, and other water bodies to change individual behavior towards proper disposal and management of solid wastes to reduce plastic pollution in our environment and seas.
The event also serves as a platform for presenting and raising awareness on the extent of marine debris pollution in our oceans. JAJPHorvidalla, CRERDEC