WILLEMSTAD – More than 193,890 kilos of waste was collected last Saturday by at least 1,300 volunteers during World Clean Up Day Curaçao 2020. The waste was collected at 80 locations. Later, this week, the final kilos will be announced as garbage is still being transported from some locations to landfill near Malpais. The organization of the cleaning campaign is satisfied.
The corona crisis had an effect on World Clean Up Day. Many volunteers chose not to sign up this year or canceled as a precaution. “Although we think that is a shame, we can only understand it. That is why we are all the more proud of the large group of people who did participate and the enormous amount of waste that has been cleaned up,” says volunteer coordinator Vicky Trinidad. In other years, the cleanup invariably attracted between 2000 and 3500 volunteers.
The organization of the clean-up campaign is also grateful to all the sponsors who contributed, both financially and with materials, bins, and vehicles to handle all the waste. “Especially in difficult economic times, we know what it means for these companies to help,” says the chairman of the Curaçao Clean Up Foundation, Maarten Schakel.
Due to corona, groups could be a maximum of 25 people this year and the social distance between the volunteers had to be guaranteed as much as possible. Volunteers noticed that the neighborhoods of Barbuquet, Las Almas, Nieuw Nederland and Scharloo, among others, were substantially cleaner than a year ago. The Kustbatterij district participated on a large scale for the first time. 138 divers cleaned the reef at 11 different beaches from cups, bottles, and fishing lines. Loaders and trucks came into action in some neighborhoods to collect large quantities of bulky waste: 50,000 kilos of waste were collected from Kustbatterij. On the road between Ronde Klip and Playa Kanoa 40,000 kilos were collected and trucks drove back and forth to the landfill at Malpais.
To follow up the cleaning campaign, a special “World Clean Up Day Curaçao Anthem” was launched on Friday. Singer Dibo D and producer Menasa made the track “Limpia Bo”, which has since gone viral on social media.
In addition, the Curaçao Clean Up foundation plans to hand over a petition to the government, parliament and the business community next week with five spearheads for a cleaner environment: drastic reduction of the landfill disposal costs, a ban on single-use plastic, a major long-term information and advertising campaign, more waste bins on the street and more means for control. Schakel: “A clean environment is the responsibility of all of us. We showed ourselves again with the clean up. It is now up to other stakeholders, such as politics, to create the right framework to actually keep the island clean.” The petition has now been signed about 4500 times and that can still be done on bit.ly/korsoulimpi in the coming days.