Macuata communities says no to plastics
Recently, as part and contribution to the United Nations Environment Programmes ‘Beat Plastic Pollution’ campaign in conjunction with World Environment and Ocean Day, the communities of Naduri, Namama, Nabukadogo, Nabouono, Nasea, Naqumu, Niurua, Korotubu, Yalava and Lakeba carried out clean up campaigns with their community members.
Around 169.7 kilograms (kgs) of plastics were collected from nine communities.
Adding to this, a total of 931 plastic bottles were also collected from nine communities, 71 plastic containers from three communities, 37 glass bottles from two communities, 31.8 kgs of clothes and rags from four communities and 2,067 tins from eight communities.
WWF-Pacific’s Macuata Field Officer, Opeti Vateitei, and Community Officer, Metui Tokece, were part of the clean-up campaigns that the communities each carried out within one to three hours.
The clean-up campaigns was a partnership with the iQoliqoli Cokovata Management Committee (QCMC), with non-governmental organisation, Community Centred Conservation Fiji or C3 Fiji part of the waste management initiative in Naqumu and Lakeba, as the two communities are project sites.
“The support was overwhelming and it was a first time for everyone to hold a joint clean-up campaign. Most of the communities already had their own functions at the same time but to see them allocate members to be part and undertake this clean ups is a great testament to the commitment they have for a cleaner environment.”
“The waste collected with these communities may seem small but we believe everything starts from home or each individual. We all need to play our individual part and if we all do or encourage other communities and individuals to do so, like we did over the last few days, it eventually will all add up to a big positive change,” highlighted Vateitei.
“We have become too reliant on plastics for everyday use that now we are over reliant on plastics. For everyday use, we need to use plastics. For instance our oceans are literally littered with plastics as statistics reveal that around 13 million tonnes of plastics end up in our oceans and we also know that it takes a single plastic around 400 years to biodegrade,” added Tokece.
According to UNEP, one million plastic drinking bottles are purchased every 60 seconds with up to five trillion disposable plastic bags are used annually.
Sasa community, the remaining community that make up iQoliqoli Cokovata will hold their clean-up campaign today.