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Dhaka     Wednesday   25 May 2022

12068 kg pollutants removed from Cox’s Bazar sea beaches

News Desk || risingbd.com

Published: 14:55, 24 January 2022   Update: 15:06, 24 January 2022
12068 kg pollutants removed from Cox’s Bazar sea beaches

Blue Guards member receive training on various aspects of marine biodidvecrity conservation

Blue Guards, a youth fisher-led beach cleaning initiatives, has removed 12,068 kg pollutants from sea beaches covering Cox's Bazar Sadar, Moheshkhali, Ramu, Teknaf, Ukhiya and Kuakata areas in 2021.

The Blue Guards participated in the waste removal efforts in the sea beach areas and collected non-decomposable garbage including plastic bottles, polythene bag and sheet, food packet, single use plastics, and discarded nets during March-December 2021.

“Plastic pollutants remain in the sea for a long time, which have long term harmful effects on fish & other animals. We are collecting debriefs from coastline regularly to conserve ocean and fish” says, Tarek, a Blue Guards of Rastarpara, Khurushkul in Cox's Bazar Sadar.

                                                    Blue Guards members with collected pollutants 

Like him, WorldFish Bangladesh engaged local young people, both men and women (18-35 years old) around Cox’s Bazar and the Kuakata Sea beach areas and in the Nijhum Dwip Marine Protected Area (MPA) under it’s USAID funded ECOFISH II Activity.
Dr. M A Wahab, team leader of ECOFISH II, said “Ocean is the home of the most of the world’s biodiversity, and is the main source of protein for more than a billion people around the globe, but ocean pollution reached to the alarming level day by day”.

Aiming to conserve marine biodiversity and optimizing potential of blue economy in Bangladesh, we have mobilized the Blue Guards”

“A significant number of people involve in fishing in Bangladesh. Their lives and livelihoods depend on the ocean. Recognizing the youth potential, ECOFISH II involves youth fishers as Blue Guards to keep the coastal waters clean” reiterated Dr. Wahab.

So far, about 100 youths (including 20% women) are engaged as the Blue Guards and the number will be increased to 200 and the initiative will cover the St. Martin’s Island as well in 2022.

The Blue Guards, after collecting plastics and discarded fishing nets from coastal waters and beaches, is disposing those materials through linking with the local plastic recycling system or storing in a safer place.

  Blue Guards members collect huge number of pollutants from sea beach of Ramu on International Coastal Cleanup Day

In addition, they are voluntarily working with the EOCFISH II team in marine biodiversity conservation and developing awareness among the fishermen to sympathetically treat the megafauna, sharks, turtles, dolphin, porpoises and small whales if they are knotted in the fishing nets and carefully release them into the waters. The practice of releasing knotted turtles & dolphins, gain popularity among the artisanal fishing boat skippers.

The Blue Guards have received training from the ECOFISH II on various aspects of beach cleaning, marine biodiversity conservation, and got equipped with the necessary logistics including jersey, trouser, cap and shoes.