Thu, 23 May 2024

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Plastic waste and cigarette butts
Published on: Saturday, April 13, 2024
By: Mohd Izham Hashim
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Plastic waste and cigarette butts
Conor (back row, fifth from left) together with volunteers, resort staff, members of the press and environmental non-governmental organisation Reef Check Malaysia (RCM).
Kota Kinabalu: Dozens of volunteers, including resort staff and local media joined forces with environmental NGO Reef Check Malaysia (RCM) for a clean-up of Tanjung Aru Beach to celebrate Shangri-La Tanjung Aru resort’s newly crowned Asean Green Hotel Award.

Using the association’s “Green Swell” application, volunteers from the resort spearheaded by Shangri-La Tanjung Aru General Manager, Conor Hadlington along with members of local media descended upon a section of Tanjung Aru beach and removed  46kg of rubbish which include plastic waste and 600 cigarette butts within 200 metres square of the public beach. 

The app requires volunteers to record data of thrash collected, identifying quantity of corresponding rubbish categories.

The data will be uploaded to an online database available to the public. 

Aside from the key metrics like weight and distance, the app offers a breakdown of trash categories.

This allows the association and relevant parties like city councils to have a detailed record of the types and amount of trash collected in their vicinity.

RCM Programme Manager, Nadhirah Mohd Rifai said beach clean-ups raise awareness on the dangers of marine debris to the environment and its effects. 

“Volunteers get to experience first-hand the types of thrash collected and see for themselves the composition of thrash,” she said. 

RCM’s International Coastal Clean Up Report 2023 stated that a total of 29,466.06kg of marine litter was collected throughout Malaysia that day, weighing approximately equivalent to the weight of an adult Humpback Whale.

The top five most commonly found items during the International Coastal Clean Up Day 2023 along Malaysian shores were plastic bottles, cigarette butts, plastic/foam pieces, plastic bags and plastic bottle caps.

Shangri-La Tanjung Ary was awarded the prestigious Green Hotel recognition for its various environmental practices which include providing reusables, energy conservation initiatives, food waste prevention systems, initiatives towards zero single-use plastics, solar-powered lighting, recycling, as well as managing its own thriving organic herb garden at the resort.  

Shangri-La Tanjung Aru is Sabah’s premier beach resort and is recognised as the market leader in the state’s tourism industry with its outstanding employee care packages, continued financial achievements and sustainable environmental practices that have been recognised since 2000 when the resort was first awarded the international ISO14001 certification.

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