Rains bring tons of garbage on the shores of Kovalam; Policy needed for protecting Ocean and its environment

Rains bring tons of garbage on the shores of Kovalam; Policy needed for protecting Ocean and its environment

About five tons of plastic, medical waste and other garbage washed ashore within two days in the international tourist spot of Kovalam has raised serious concern about the marine life and even the people who dwell on the beaches. Moreover, many are worried about the trash that could affect the world famous tourist spot in Kerala.

In the last two days, about five tons was washed ashore in Kovalam which had 90 per cent of plastic, nylon, PVC, rubber, polyester and leather, according to Friends of Marine Life (FML), a marine research forum in Valiyathura.

Among the garbage, a large amount of medical waste was also found that has aggravated the health concerns. Apart from this, flux, school bags, fishing nets, foot wears and toys were also found among the garbage that was washed ashore, FML convenor Robert Panippila said.

He said that the Suchitwa Mission was contacted for removing the waste from the shoreline.

Meanwhile, lifeguard Sasi at Kovalam said that he has not seen such a large quantity of garbage in his life.  “In my 24 years of service here, I have not seen such tonne of garbage washed ashore,” he said.

Meanwhile, there are also reports that garbage has been washed ashore in Valiyathura beach also.

 Harita Kerala Mission and speedy garbage removal

Talking to kadapuram.com, Haritha Kerala Mission Vice Chairperson T N Seema said that she had talked to Friends of Mission Life and the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation. “It is for the corporation to take any initiative on removing the garbage and I have talked to them. First of all, the garbage that has been washed ashore should be segregated and then dried up as it is full of mud and water. Only after this, the corporation would be able to do take some initiative in removing them,” she said.

With respect to medical waste that has raised serious concern, she said IMAGE of IMA would look into it.

Comprehensive Policy needed for protecting Ocean and its environment

Noting that one of the reasons for the accumulation of garbage on the shores of Kovalam was because of pre monsoon cleaning of the rivers and water streams, Robert Panippila said “the waste that is left out during the during pre monsoon cleaning of rivers and water streams flows down to the sea at times of rains.  There should be some scientific ways to block waste entering the ocean from the water streams. At least some kind of barrier should be there to arrest the entering of waste into the sea.”  

As far as the fishing nets are concerned, these nets that might have been kept in a careless manner in fishing harbours or fish landing centres might have been washed into the sea.

Every season, this phenomenon is happening and garbage gets accumulated in the region. This is because of the particular land mark of Kovalam. He also mentioned that Kovalam had experienced the same situation last year also.

He also called for a policy for protecting the sea and marine environment.

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