International Coastal Cleanup 2009
On September 19th the Tourism Development Company Ltd (TDC) and Protectors of the Environment (POE) will lead the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) at Las Cuevas Beach. In 2008, the TDC and POE, coordinators for the Las Cuevas Beach Cleanup, collected 1005 pounds of garbage.
A data collection activity, each item is documented on data cards and sent to the Ocean Conservancy, the international body which hosts the ICC, in order to give a global snapshot of the problem of marine debris. The Ocean Conservancy has worked for more than three decades toward its of goal of a wild, healthy ocean and last year, nearly 400,000 volunteers collected more than 6.8 million pounds of trash in 104 countries — the world's largest volunteer effort of its kind.
In Trinidad and Tobago the Caribbean Network for Integrated Rural Development (CNIRD) has been the National Coordinator of the International Coastal Cleanup since 2002. Under the CNIRD, the National Planning Committee (NPC) was formed to facilitate the active involvement of various stakeholders, both government and non-governmental in the National Cleanup exercise. The committee works towards building public awareness and promoting behavioral change with respect to indiscriminate solid waste disposal and its negative impact on the marine environment. The TDC has been a member of the National Planning Committee since 2005. Before that, TIDCO served as a member from 2003. Other members of the committee include:
Caribbean Network for Integrated Rural Development (CNIRD) – National Coordinator
Carib Glassworks Ltd.
Environmental Management Authority (EMA)
Girl Guides Association of Trinidad and Tobago
Hand Arnold (Trinidad) Limited
Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA)
Ministry of Planning, Housing and the Environment (MPH&E)
Protectors of the Environment (POE)
Solid Waste Management Company Ltd. (SWMCOL)
Tobago House of Assembly (THA)
Tourism Development Company (TDC)
West Indian Tobacco Company Limited (WITCO)
Yacht Services Association of Trinidad and Tobago (YSATT)
Each item collected during the cleanup will be documented on data cards and sent to the Ocean Conservancy, the international body which hosts the ICC, in order to give a global snapshot of the problem of marine debris. There are six (6) categories of waste that are collected and recorded on data cards:
Shoreline & Recreational Activities
The majority of marine debris comes from land based activities such as food consumption, beach-goers, picnics, sports, recreation and festivals as well as garbage washed from streets, and rivers.
Recreational fishing and boating, commercial fishing, cargo/military/ cruise ship operations and offshore industries such as oil drilling can product marine debris.
Smoking Related Activities
Improper disposal of cigarette filters, cigar tips and tobacco product packaging is common on both land and sea.
Legal and illegal dumping of building materials, car parts and large household appliances.
This type of debris can result from people improperly disposing of waste in toilets and city streets. Since medical and personal hygiene debris often enters the waste stream through sewer systems, its appearance on the beach can indicate that there is the presence of other unseen pollutants.
Debris Items of Local Concern
These are other items that don’t fit in to any of the other categories and usually don’t belong on a beach.
This year, volunteer and help cleanup our coasts.