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Coastal cleanup this weekend

Be the Change for a Trash Free Coast is the CYEN-Barbados theme for the 2013 International Coastal Cleanup.

The importance of solid waste management to the national development of Barbados has been clearly identified as a priority area in the budgetary proposal for 2013 released by Christopher Sinckler.

This was evidenced by the introduction of the municipal solid waste tax which was instituted to meet the expense of costs associated with the treatment of solid waste thus falling in line with policy statements annunciated in the greening of the economy thrust that is currently being pursued.

While most Barbadians think of solid waste primarily from the prospective of collection and disposal of domestic waste, data collected over the past 15 years indicates that there is a solid waste problem on beaches in Barbados. This should be of significant concern given the threat that plastics and other debris (such as metals and glass) pose a significant health and safety risk for both sea bathers and coastal and marine wildlife. The damage that aesthetically unpleasing beaches could have on the tourism industry is massive thus causing a reduction of foreign exchange which is needed to sustain the country.

“Marine debris is one of the most widespread pollution problems threatening our ocean and waterways, marine wildlife, and undermining tourism and economies – yet it’s entirely preventable,” said Vikki Spruill, President and CEO of Ocean Conservancy.

Every year, Ocean Conservancy through the International Coastal Cleanup undertakes the world’s largest volunteer effort to cleanup oceans and waterways. It provides a compelling global snapshot of marine debris collected and recorded at more than 6,000 sites all over the world. The ICC data helps to provide a roadmap for eliminating marine debris, by demonstrating the scope and scale of the problem and documenting trends. In Barbados the Caribbean Youth Environment Network is the local organiser sanctioned by Ocean Conservancy to manage the ICC.

On Saturday, September 21, starting at 6 a.m. the CYEN Barbados chapter in association with Coca-Cola (A brand of BHL Holdings), Sustainable Barbados Recycling Center Inc., The Tourism Development Corporation, Columbus Barbados and the Caribbean Policy Development Centre will be hosting an International Coastal Cleanup Day 2013. The cleanups would be held on Long Beach Christ Church, Chandler’s Bay St. Lucy, Six Men’s St. Peter, Morgan Lewis St. Andrew, Hot pot St. Michael, Batts Rock St. Michael, Pile Bay, St. Michael, Browne’s Beach and Maxwell Beach Christ Church.

Interested persons or groups are asked to register by calling National Coordinator Waynelle Collymore-Taylor at 437-6055 or via email or on our Facebook page

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