Izmir Metropolitan Municipality participated in the Marine Litter Monitoring Program initiated by the European Environment Agency Initiative. On the first day of the program, the wastes accumulated on the one-hundred-meter coastline of the İnciraltı Urban Forest in Balçova were collected. The collected wastes will be classified as plastic, wood, metal materials. Then, it will be looked at which wastes are generated on the coasts and how much.
The Blue Flag Coordination Unit, under the İzmir Metropolitan Municipality Marine Protection Branch Directorate, has added a new one to its work carried out with the slogan "The Color of Beaches is Blue". The unit participated in the Marine Litter Monitoring Program (MLW) initiated by the European Environment Agency Initiative and conducted by the Turkish Environmental Education Foundation (TÜRKÇEV) and Adnan Menderes Anatolian High School. The project started in the İnciraltı Urban Forest in Balçova, which is heavily visited by the people of İzmir. Thanks to this program, the movement of wastes on the coasts and in the Gulf will be monitored and classified.
The goal is not just to collect garbage
Doğan Karataş, Regional Coordinator of the Turkish Environmental Education Foundation, said that the study has been carried out at 11 points in Turkey for about a year and a half. Stating that marine litter and plastics are important pillars of the litter problem, Doğan Karataş said, “Our aim is to produce a scientific study. This is not a garbage collection event. It is a completely scientific study, the data of which are analyzed and the results are reported. We will categorize the garbage we collect here one by one as tires, woods, metal materials and we will follow the movements of these garbage especially in our country and locally in the Gulf for a year.”
“The world's biggest problem is plastics”
Stating that it is meaningful for Izmir Metropolitan Municipality to be involved in the work, Karataş said: “The biggest problem in the world is plastics. We have also seen that most of the garbage we collect consists of plastics. Plastics do not dissolve easily in nature. Today, there is also the problem of micro plastic, which affects our table. We want to draw attention to these. Here we capture both everyday use litter and marine litter. Through this work, we will send the message to people that garbage does not arise by itself, it is something they produce.”
“We will look at how much waste is formed on the coasts”
Özlem Görken, Marine Protection Branch Manager of the Climate Change and Environmental Protection Control Department, stated that they were happy to contribute to the project and said: “The wastes to be collected on the sea coast will be classified. It will be looked at how much waste is formed on the coasts. We are talking about human-made waste. We are constantly working to keep our bay and shores clean. We will continue our efforts to raise awareness and create a sustainable environment and marine environment.”
“Most cigarette butts were found”
Sema Uzun Güneş, who collects the wastes that hit the shore of İnciraltı Urban Forest, said, “We collected the most cigarette butts. There are also pieces of glass, plastics. Our coasts and seas are very precious. Let's know their value. Let's not cause an irreversible pollution," he said.
“We are doing the biggest harm”
Adnan Menderes Anatolian High School student Sıla Alper stated that people are constantly polluting nature and said, “The seas are getting polluted. We have to prevent this pollution now. We also collect the garbage here. Even if everyone picks up the trash in front of their house, it's a lot. kazanwe race. We don't have any other living space, yet people despise everything. We complain about many things, but we do the biggest damage. We do not leave good things to future generations. We will have children, if I can live in this world right now, we have to leave a beautiful space for them. We collect a lot of crocuses. It would be much better if you put them in a bag and throw them in the trash instead of throwing them on the ground. "We are doing a lot of damage to nature," he said.
After the whole day's work, the wastes were classified and reported. The program will continue for one year in İnciraltı Urban Forest.