World Cleanup Day
After months of planning, World Cleanup Day is fast approaching – taking place this coming weekend, Saturday 15 September.
Millions of people from 150 different countries around the globe will be participating in this year’s event, and it’s not too late to get involved. Divers and non-divers alike will be undertaking beach and reef clean-ups, but World Cleanup Day extends to every corner of the Earth. Rivers, lakes, forests, countryside and city streets are all on the agenda for the World Cleanup Day.
World Cleanup Day began 10 years ago when the citizens of Estonia took action to clear their country of illegally dumped rubbish. 4 percent of Estonia’s population took part in the initiative. Inspired by Estonia’s success, World Cleanup Day began, and this year it is estimated that 5 percent of the entire world’s population will participate.
The ‘Green Wave’ will begin on Saturday morning in New Zealand and will end 36 hours later in Hawai’i. To get involved, you can visit the World Cleanup Day website to locate your country’s contact details and find the event nearest to you. The World Cleanup Day app, available from Google Play and the App Store, lists many of the events around the world. It also has a mapping function to highlight and report areas of uncleared trash.
Alternatively, you may wish to visit your local dive center, many of whom will be running cleanup dives and beach or shore cleans. If you happen to be on holiday somewhere that weekend, you may find yourself given the opportunity to participate in a reef clean, and many dive centers offer them free of charge. Or, you could just organize a group of friends and start cleaning!
Why is this important to Paralenz?
It’s important to everybody. The world’s oceans have suffered from some of the worst effects of pollution – especially from plastic. Discarded bottles, bags, and fishing gear are killing huge amounts of fish, turtles, birds, whales, and dolphins on a daily basis. Plastic takes many years to break down, and the small pieces (microplastics) are accidentally eaten by aquatic animals. Plastic pollution has become such a problem that it has even entered the human food chain.
Cleaning up trash is only part of the story. Divers all over the world have seen what plastic pollution does to our oceans. However, it was only in the last few years that the problem has been widely reported by the mainstream media. Documentaries such as the BBC’s Blue Planet II brought plastic pollution to the world’s attention.
The message is – divers saw it, but the world didn’t. The Paralenz is the perfect camera for divers to use to highlight the problem of trash on our reefs. The mask mount allows divers to keep both hands free to deal with the tools and bags needed to collect the trash. The whole dive can be recorded and shared on social media right after the dive through the Paralenz’s inbuilt WiFi connection.
This will make for great footage during the day itself but it may be more important than sharing the event with your friends. Part of the cleanup process involves analyzing the type of trash that is found and where it is located. This identifies the source of the problem, and assists in preventing the rubbish from getting into the water – or the beach, rivers, lakes, forests and city streets – in the first place.
Share it with the world!
If you take part in a cleanup event this weekend, we’d really like to see your stories. Share your experience on the Paralenz World Facebook page. It could be under the water or in the middle of the forest – the more people that see the problem, the easier it will be to convince others: to be more considerate with their trash, recycle more effectively, and seek alternatives to problem products like plastic.
It goes without saying that World Cleanup Day is a major worldwide event, but looking after our planet doesn’t just happen once every year. It’s for every day, every year. As divers we are ambassadors for the World’s oceans. Together with Paralenz, we really can make a difference.
Read more about World Cleanup Day 2018 here.
Did you find this information useful? Make sure to stay tuned for more and don’t forget to join the community on our Paralenz World Facebook Group!