Saturday 26th September 2020, Dar es Salaam: The European Union (EU) and its Member States in partnership with Forum CC organised an “EU Beach Clean-up Day” from 6.30 am to 11.00 am on 26th September 2020 at Coco-Beach, Dar es Salaam. Our objective is to galvanize the community into taking part in this activity and to raise awareness of the negative impact of polluted beaches. Why? The simple act of beach cleaning reduces marine pollution by removing single use solid waste and encourages those who take part, and those who see it happening, to change their behaviour when it comes to dropping litter or dumping waste wherever.
The Forum CC, Board Chairperson Euster Kibona in her opening remarks said that, “We appreciate the support and cooperation of European Union team in this event which complement our advocacy efforts on deepening active participation and accountability to reduce marine pollution by addressing single use solid waste challenges around beaches with emphasis on behavior change and respond to climate change at all levels. Moreover, Forum CC appreciate efforts from CSOs, the Government, partners and the general public in this event and will keep on engaging them effectively to use various alternatives and behavior change to manage solid waste; especially from single use products, encouraging sorting waste at the source and reduce marine pollution and climate related issues.”
During the event the Guest of Honour, representing the Kinondoni Municipal Director, Mr. Alban Mugiabucho stated that, "We appreciate efforts of all key players in supporting the government to manage solid waste. However, we keep on encouraging the general public to keep waste safely with sorting mechanism at the source."
Unprecedented ocean pollution and dirty beaches, especially from unattended plastic waste on beaches in Dar es Salaam is a huge challenge.
Millions of tonnes of plastic waste enter the sea from water canals and it is estimated that the ocean may contain one tonne of plastic for every three tonnes of fish by 2025 and by 2050 more plastic than fish (by weight) if we continue on with business as usual. Human behaviour must change.
Speaking during the event, the Head of the European Union Delegation to Tanzania, Ambassador Manfredo Fanti said, “It is vital to sort waste at source and avoid dumping it into waterways which lead into the sea. In only two hours of work on a limited area of Coco Beach, we have collected ninety-six (96) bags of waste; plastic bottles dominating as per waste audit report from 10 percent of collected waste bags. This shows clearly the magnitude of the problem, because this increasing pollution is threatening the marine environment and ultimately our health”.
In 2019, the European Union (EU) joined global efforts to align with all United Nations member states pledging to prevent and significantly reduce marine pollution, including marine debris and nutrient pollution by 2020 through organised EU Beach Clean-up Days: #EUBeachCleanupDay2019 under the theme- Global campaign for clean, plastic-free oceans. #EUBeachCleanup is part of the #EUGreenDeal.
The EU and FORUMCC have organized this event as part of awareness campaign to fight pollution of our oceans. FORUMCC has more than 80 members from CSOs and has been engaged in environmental cleanliness programmes for Climate Action with other partners and stakeholders including CSOs, Government (Kinondoni Municipality), Schools and voluntary organisations. Together we are advocating for accountability on addressing illegal dumping leading direct to solid waste in waterways which lead to the ocean.