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Sep 3, 2019

Beach Marine Litter Survey and Clean-up Held

The move to phase out single use plastic and those plastic shopping bags is underway, but it is not going as smooth as possible. Most people are still holding on to plastic bags and others are discarding it along the highways, beaches and other places. Over the weekend, a beach marine litter survey and clean-up took place at a favourite swimming spot: Belizean Beach just outside of the City. The initiative is helpful to fulfil the D.O.E.’s mandate to reduce and control marine pollution as activities to reduce plastic pollution in the marine environment, take place. News Five Hipolito Novelo reports.  

 

Hipolito Novelo reporting

A beach marine litter survey and clean-up was held this past Sunday at Belizean Beach located just outside Belize City on the George Price Highway. .

 

Maxine Monsanto, Environmental Officer, D.O.E.

Maxine Monsanto

“Belizean Beach is actually one of our designated monitoring cite for macro plastic, the large plastic that you can see in order to determine how much plastic is reaching the beach or how much marine litter is within the environment in these locations.” 

 

The initiative was a joint effort by the Department of the Environment and the Centre for Environment, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Centre under the Commonwealth Litter Programme the Belize Audubon Society and volunteers. As Belize moves forward with the phase-out of single-use plastic, plastic shopping bags continue to be a problem.

 

Dareece Chuc

Dareece Chuc, Environmental Education Director, B.A.S.

“Whenever we do these clean ups we find that shopping bags are a regular items that we find so people dispose of that as garbage. Even though people tend to reuse the in their homes as a garbage bag it still ends up in our environment. And so if we can reduce that one thing and people take their own shopping bags to the store.”

 

As part of his official visit to Belize, the Permanent Under-Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom, Sir Simon McDonald participated in the beach clean-up/survey.

 

 

Sir Simon McDonald, Permanent Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, U.K.

“One of the messages is that we have to change our behavior that if we throw things away in the wrong place, they end up in the sea and the eventually end up in fish. SO the fish we eat is filled with micro  plastic these days; bad for the fish, bad for us, bad for planet earth.”

 

 

Reporting for News Five, I am Hipolito Novelo.


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