San Andres, Quezon─ CENRO Catanauan together with the Local barangays and group of volunteers simultaneously conducted a joint shoreline and mangrove cleanup operation along the beach and mangrove areas of the six (6) coastal barangays in San Andres, Quezon, namely: Brgys. Alibijaban, Mangero, Pansoy, Tala, Camflora and Poblacion. A total of one (1) ton of wet plastic waste was collected.

The other participating agencies in the operation are the Philippine Coast Guard, the various Departments in the Local Government Unit of San Andres, Quezon, the concerned Barangays and the other volunteer groups (4P’s, TUPAD beneficiaries and residents).

The activity was conducted in connection with the celebration of Month of the Ocean (MOO) with a theme “Protect and Restore Ecosystems and Biodiversity”. The activity aims to reduce unwanted wastes that were not properly disposed of by the public, which turns into litter in the oceans. During the activity, mostly plastic wastes and fishing nets were seen entangled on the roots, leaves and stems of mangrove tree species. There were also deteriorating clothes that are lingering in the mangrove species for a long time which affects their growth. Despite this problem, the participation of the local barangays and concerned residents have been observed and showed willingness to join in this activity to protect Mother Nature.

According to Reverie Seguit, designated Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officer (MENRO) of San Andres, Quezon, one of the big problems arises in the management of coastal and marine resources is the volume of waste that accumulates from time to time in coastal barangays. This concern has to be addressed immediately by the help of the community which will also be assisted by the barangay Officials. She also expressed sincere thanks for the initiative of CENRO Catanauan and for assisting each barangays in the conduct of clean-up activity. Likewise, Brgy. Chairperson Raul Endonila of Brgy. Camflora proposes to have a mangrove tree planting activity to the areas that need rehabilitation specifically on the National Greening Program (NGP) sites as he believes that mangrove trees shall act as the natural barrier/filter to plastic wastes that may otherwise be eaten by marine animals.

CENRO Catanauan is very thankful to the volunteers of the six barangays for taking part in cleaning the shoreline and mangrove areas and encouraged them to replicate the same activity in a massive and participative behavior and urged them to manage their waste properly.