As an official partner of the International Coastal Cleanup, The Body Shop has organised annual Beach Cleanup events since 1994 with the aim of fostering awareness about our need to keep our beaches clean and marine life free from marine debris and pollution. Internationally, volunteers around the world participate in the annual International Coastal Clean-Up, which falls on every third Saturday in September, removing tonnes of trash from beaches and waterways.
During our 2017 Beach Cleanup event at Pantai Morib, The Body Shop staff and volunteers from the public collected a whopping 5,274 kilograms of trash! Types of common trash found along the coastal area were cigarette butts, food wrappers, plastic beverage bottles and caps, plastic straws, plastic and foam take-away containers, and much more. Though each individual piece seems small in size and significance, a build-up of this can cause a huge disruption in our marine ecosystem and is deadly to marine life.
It's not just common trash that's been found washed up on the shores too. Volunteers from around the world have reported finding items such as baby strollers, toilet seat covers, washing machines, mini refrigerators, and much more - a grim reminder that our oceans are being treated as dumping grounds for man-made waste.
Over the years, the amount of trash collected worldwide has been staggering. Data gathered from the International Coastal Cleanup 2017 showed that the amount of plastic straws collected from beaches worldwide put together was enough to reach the height of over 10,000 palm trees. The total weight of trash collected alone was equivalent to 812 cruise ship anchors, or 9,285,600 kilograms!
Coastal trash is not simply rubbish dumped at our beaches, but also trash thrown away carelessly in drains and rivers which find their way back to the ocean and accumulate there. Even when we do not see the ocean, we can play a part in littering it. We urge every citizen in Malaysia to play their part in saving marine life and to help reduce the amount of trash floating in our ocean by reducing their usage of disposable plastics, recycling, and being mindful about throwing trash, however small, in the right place.
The ocean is our responsibility, but we can't do it alone. Participate link : https://oceanconservancy.org/trash-free-seas/international-coastal-cleanup/volunteer/ in a beach cleanup event near you , or even organise link : https://oceanconservancy.org/trash-free-seas/international-coastal-cleanup/start-a-cleanup/ your own! Each effort, however small, makes an impact.