A new Marine Litter Campaign – Saving Our Blue – which will be featured throughout the summer, has been launched by the Minister for the Environment, Sustainable Development and Climate Change José Herrera.
Plastic takes hundreds of years to degrade and plastic littering, both at home or on the beach, is ending up in our seas and harming our ecosystems.
The Minister explained that throughout this campaign “we will be raising awareness on making slight alterations to our lifestyles, which will collectively go a long way and will lead to living a more sustainable life.”
Minister Herrera stated that this campaign was launched because the inappropriate amount of waste generated on our beaches needs to be tackled.
“The status of our marine environment is altering, and we need to hasten action to keep our waters clean and the life below it pristine,” he added.
“This initiative was taken not only to address the nuisance that littering causes to bathers and beach goers, but also to sustain our ecosystems,” said the Minister. “For this to happen, we need to avoid using products which cause a lot of waste such as packaging waste and use alternatives.”
Minister Herrera commended the work carried out by various voluntary organisations and volunteers in organising clean-ups.
He said that these are a valuable means to cure the marine litter problem, however everyone should do their part in preventing marine litter in the first place.
Minister Herrera pointed out that, “we need to instill a change in the mentality and shift to more sustainable practices. Our economy thrives because of our blue and the whole society well-being links with it. And therefore, we must not allow it to die slowly. We need to take care of it. Let’s save our blue.”
“As part of the campaign, we will be inviting the general public to join us in the 10 pledges of Saving Our Blue, which include to carry a re-usable bottle when going to the beach; to say no to plastic cups, plastic straws and plastic bags; to choose re-usable or biodegradable cutlery and plates; to separate waste at source; to opt for no packaging when possible when shopping; to dispose cigarette butts, chemicals and unused medicines properly; to avoid cosmetics containing microbeads and to pick up and throw in bins littered items,” said the Minister.
He added that, ” the organisers will also be visiting selected beaches throughout the summer to inform the general public how easy it is to change consumption patterns.”
A specific programme will also be ongoing with Skolasajf, aimed specifically for the younger generations, and in addition there will be a number of clean-ups taking place in collaboration with ERA, Wasteserv and eNGOs.
Photograph DOI-Pierre Sammut
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