Ricochet News

Volunteer beach clean-up planned for Overstrand

Aug 30, 2017
Volunteer beach clean-up planned for Overstrand

As part of the International Coastal Clean-up Day on Saturday, 16 September, Overstrand Municipality is planning a clean-up operation along its coastline. To that end residents, businesses and schools, are urged to assist with cleaning the local beaches and waterways.

Plastic and cigarette butts are two of the most widespread problems threatening the ocean. As was seen recently in Kleinmond, a whale came close to the threat of drowning on becoming entangled in old rope or fishing nets. There have also been many instances where fish, birds, and animals have often ingested rubbish they mistook for food. “Something that can result in suffocation, as well as slow starvation from a false sense of satiation,” said Liezl de Villiers, Overstrand’s Senior Environmental Manager.

An ordinary plastic container can take anywhere between 50 and 100 years to disintegrate as it is not bio degradable. Alarmingly, since it’s advent in the 1950’s over one billion tons of this type of plastic has been discarded.

More concerningly, ocean trash has the added detriment of choking coastal economies, deterring tourist visits and causing enormous clean-up bills.

Join us on 16 and 19 September to help clean up our beaches.

For more information on where to meet and what to bring, phone Antonio Da Silva-Swart 072 462 4274, Petro 079 807 9726 or Whale Coast Conservation 028 316 2527.

More about the Coastal Clean-up Conservation

Since August 2016, Coastal Clean-up Conservation - a voluntary group of like-minded people based in Hermanus, have come together to do their part in cleaning the coast of South Africa.

25 clean-ups have been initiated and 591 bags of marine debris have been collected from Betty's Bay to De Damme, Struisbaai through Arniston, Cape Infanta and the Breede River, Witsand, Stilbaai, Mossel Bay and then Glentana to Klein Brak Rivier.

“We want to get as many people as possible involved on the 16th of September to come together as part of this global initiative,” said Antonio Da Silva-Swart.

“Plastics SA has been sponsoring me since January 2017 with hiking gear and fuel expenses in my marine debris awareness hikes undertaken along the coast from Cape Point to Sedgefield over the last 12 months, a total coastal stretchline of 665 km. And this mission continues up the east coast of South Africa.

“It is through these hikes that I have begun to involve people all along the coast. Now I have a representative in Betty's Bay, Kleinmond, Hermanus, Gansbaai, Franskraal, Struisbaai, Witsand, Stilbaai, Mosselbaai and George, all of whom are taking the fight against marine litter to the locals of their respective towns.

“Since February 2017, I have initiated a coastal clean-up on the first Saturday of each month in the Whale Coast area.

“I have involved local high and primary schools in doing numerous clean-ups with me: Gansbaai Primary, Hermanus High and Primary School, as too Pringle House. I also want to initiate talks with the Kleinmond schools, as well as Zwelihle Senior Secondary.

“The aim of this event is to get locals involved as an awareness exercise so that they can do this on a regular, sustainable manner going forward. It is also my goal to get the coast clean in those areas where nobody has ever cast much attention on this matter,” stated Da Silva-Swart.