The Bottle for Botol team were up bright and early on Sunday February 19 to participate in Bali’s Biggest Beach Clean Up. In the spirit of Valentine’s Day and Hari Peduli Sampah (National Waste Day) we joined the One Island One Voice campaign started by Bye Bye Plastic Bags. The idea was to bring children, politicians, businesses, locals and expatriates together to show our love for Bali by cleaning its coastline and waterways. Volunteer organisers from twenty-one organisations coordinated each of the fifty-five locations, in just six weeks.
First we attended Batu Bolong, Legian and Uluwatu beaches. Batu Bolong lead the charge collecting 1.5 tons of rubbish! All of this was picked up by EcoBali Recycling, who specialise in turning tetra pak into roofing material. In Uluwatu, we joined Project Clean Uluwatu, Uluwatu Boardriders and local villagers to collect 70kg of trash.
As the sun started to set, and the tide began to go out, 540 people came together at four spots in Sanur, coordinated by Trash Hero Sanur, Nazava, Malu Dong, Bali Bunda and Bali Fokus. Here, we collected 197 bags and almost two tons of rubbish, which was collected by DKP (Department of Cleanliness and Landscaping). Students from SDN 2 Canggu and SMP 4 Wisata joined the clean up, students said they were glad to join and to have the opportunity to add to their knowledge and experience.
Over twelve thousand people came together all across the island, at fifty-five locations and collected forty tons of rubbish! This is a massive feat and we are so proud to have been involved. But the collective movement to stand and act for a more sustainable Bali, has only just begun. The support from all levels, and the number of people who mobilised, give us hope that people are ready for a change, and even more ready to act.
Written by Catherine Elliott, Dode Gargitha and Alice Sainsbury.