When I first visited La Manzanilla in Dec 1980, the beach was a blanket of paper litter after Christmas week & there was no organized effort to remove it. Since then, plastics replaced paper (alas!). Many huge plastic piles were on & near the beach when I moved here in 2008. Now, no piles are on the beach & fewer are on streets. Previously, Summer storms returned huge amounts of plastic to the beach & it decreases each year.
The GOOD news is that people litter less each year & most people remove their wastes from the beach. Also, most businesses & households clean litter adjacent to their property.
Litter Patrol Volunteers
Many volunteers remove litter from the beach, streets & arroyo on their own schedules & routes. Since 2008, I volunteered 2,050 hours & collected 15,275 gallons from the beach & several fishing nets, 1,032 gallons from the streets & arroyo, & recycled 4,126 plastic bottles. I know other volunteers' contributions are also considerable.
It has a profound impact if volunteers adopt a block or more. Some neighborhoods continue to have a lot of litter (particularly adjacent to unoccupied property), which is regrettable, because litter tends to encourage more. During the rainy season, litter from the streets, arroyo & lagoon flows into the bay & much of it ends up on the beach.
La Manzanilla Hermosa established a litter grabber lending library at Abarrotes Fani (on Maria Asunción across from the casino). You can ask to borrow a "pinza por la basura" & write your name, email or phone, & when you plan to return it on the check-out form. A grabber & bucket are extremely efficient. Most businesses are happy to let volunteers empty litter in their waste cans. It is polite to ask the first time.
Public Waste Can Project
In future, we hope there will be less litter to collect. To help make that happen, La Manzanilla Hermosa plans to place as many public waste cans as funds allow & where they are most needed by March 2019. I am donating $3,000 USD/year until the ideal number of cans are placed. We hope to provide an opportunity for others to donate to the project. The project is in its feasibility stage, which involves ensuring La Huerta will empty the cans.
We believe the ideal number of waste cans is an average of two per block in the lowlands & none on the beach or hill. The first priority is to place cans near beach entrances & locations that tourism buses park. They will also be placed wherever a business wants, if it sponsors a can. Individuals, including students & artists, will be recruited to help prepare the cans, which will convey a positive message. We intend for the cans to be aesthetically appealing, dog resistant & durable.
La Manzanilla Hermosa's public waste cans will not be placed on the beach for a number of reasons: 1. We want the beach to be as natural as possible, 2. It is difficult to empty cans on the beach, 3. The chance of overflowing cans is likely, 4. Most people already deposit wastes in cans & dumpsters after they leave the beach & 5. More cans near beach entrances should encourage more people to remove their wastes from the beach.
How People Can Help
Currently, La Manzanilla Hermosa's Litter Subcommittee consists of ten litter patrol volunteers & everyone is welcome to join in the fun, on their own schedules & routes. It is very gratifying. The subcommittee consists of three members & we hope others will join to assist with planning & implementing the public waste can project. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to be a litter patrol volunteer or subcommittee member.
Thank you for assisting La Manzanilla Hermosa as we pursue our goal to help make Bahía de Tenacatita the most plastic-free bay in the world! ¡Sí, se puede!
Lead, Litter Subcommittee
La Manzanilla Hermosa
Limpia y Sana, Orgullo de México
(Clean & Healthy, Pride of Mexico)
« Back to index | View thread »
Be sure to visit www.lamanzanilla.info for more information about La Manzanilla Mexico.