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The City of Cape Town has joined hands with several organisations for this year’s International Coastal Clean-up Day. This year’s event takes place at Muizenberg Beach on Saturday 17 September 2016. More than 150 learners from local schools in Kalk Bay and Khayelitsha have been invited to participate in the clean-up, where they will be joined by newly elected Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services, Councillor Anda Ntsodo. Read more below:

The City of Cape Town, in partnership with the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA) and PlasticsSA, is participating in this year’s International Coastal Clean-up Day on Saturday 17 September 2016 at Muizenberg Beach.About 150 participants from local schools and areas around the peninsula, Kalk Bay and Khayelitsha are expected to participate.

The City’s newly elected Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services, Councillor Anda Ntsodo, will join them, while interested residents can also participate in the event from 10:00 to 12:00.

‘The aim of the international coastal clean-up event is to involve local volunteers in taking part in the world’s biggest clean-up to remove debris from our beaches, collect valuable information about debris, and heighten public awareness about the causes of litter on our beaches.

‘The event encourages volunteers to make a positive change, and to promote worldwide efforts to reduce water pollution,’ said Councillor Ntsodo.

All participants are asked to bring along gloves and refreshments and to wear suitable clothing, including a hat.

WESSA’s Blue Flag and Eco-Schools Programme, in partnership with the City of Cape Town, will start the clean-up with a short environmental education activity.

Each participant will then be supplied with collection bags as well as clipboards, pens and paper to enable them to document their findings on the beach. The findings will be discussed and compared, after which various prizes will be awarded for some of the interesting finds.

‘Each year there is a vast increase in the number of marine animals injured or entangled in debris found in the oceans. Turtles mistake floating bags for food and thousands of seals, whales, dolphins, sharks and birds die from entanglement in fishing line, rope and other debris,’ explained Councillor Ntsodo.

For nearly three decades, volunteers around the world participating in Ocean Conservancy’s annual International Coastal Clean-up Day have picked up everything imaginable on our beaches – including cigarette butts, food wrappers, abandoned fishing gear and even cars and kitchen appliances.

The event has expanded to include clean-ups on inland lakes, rivers and streams.

In 2015 alone, more than eight tons of debris was collected by nearly 800 000 volunteers at International Coastal Clean-up Day events.

All of the data gathered at the coastal clean-up events in South Africa is collated by PlasticsSA and sent to Ocean Conservancy for their Ocean Trash Index and is used to contribute to international policy development around behaviour change and industrial best practice.

For more information about the event, resident should please contact Helen Jordaan on 021 400 1691, 021 400 4638 or 073 221 2899.

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