Cleanup Diary: 12th January 2014

Brand on the Beach report to Government

36 adults, 12 kids and 4 dogs helped to remove 83 bags and boxes of trash from Pebbles Beach on north Lamma on Sunday 12th January 2014. 229 plastic bottles were picked up, 52 of which were from the Brand on the Beach winner, Vita Water, and 3 of which contained pee.

We also picked up 58 juice boxes, 31 pens, 68 lighters, 307 straws, 120 plastic spoons and forks, 145 fishing floats, 15 toothbrushes and 2 tubes of toothpaste, 12 cans, 5 aerosols, 1 paint can, 2 silicone tubes, 1 large plastic oil can from Top Transport, 1 nappy, 3 face masks, 2 boxes of rope, 9 lightbulbs, a television, a mop, 3 scrub brushes, 17 shoes, a pair of underpants, a red handbag, 5 tennis balls, 10 packs of medicine, 11 syringes, 2 tampon applicators, 10 condoms still in the packet and 1 used. And so much packaging from everything from Pot Noodle to detergent, as well as bag after bag of polystyrene.

We also found a dead turtle and a dead starfish – both the second time we have noticed each of these in the last year.

I hope those who attended found the experience inspiring and that we can continue to explore ways in which Brand on the Beach can be used to engage and educate.

Key suggestions for government:

  1. 1. Train workers to leave organic material such as shells, seaweed and driftwood on beach. We found several bags containing organic material all things which should not require transportation to landfill
  2. 2. Targeted education campaigns need to be developed for fisherman.
  3. 3. Stop the trash at source. We must stop using “disposable” items and polystyrene in Hong Kong. Pebbles Beach provides the reason for this. Sunday’s clean up was typical, but not as bad as the beach can be, and it will be as bad again in 4 weeks.