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Vietnamese islanders promote beach cleanup campaign to save their home

Thursday, June 27, 2019, 11:19 GMT+7
Vietnamese islanders promote beach cleanup campaign to save their home
People collect garbage along the seashore on Ly Son Island, off Quang Ngai Province, central Vietnam. Photo: L.X.T / Tuoi Tre

People living on a central Vietnamese island have volunteered to collect garbage on the beach to get back its beauty.

Vietnam is famous for magnificent islands and breathtaking white sand beaches that attract lots of foreign tourists, one of which is Ly Son, an island-district of the central province of Quang Ngai.

Ly Son used to be a beautiful island, where sea turtles would lay eggs, with crystal clear sea water and artistic rocky ledges until the tourist industry began to flourish there and the environment became more polluted.

People came to Ly Son and left behind plastic waste that destroyed the beauty of white sand beaches while harming the marine life, which raised a huge concern among islanders and local authorities.

“We are living in our home but don’t feel like it,” said an old man named Pham Thoai Tuyen about the current pollution on Ly Son Island.

Young people on the island thus established a group named “Vi Ly Son Khong Rac Thai” (For A Garbage-Free Ly Son) and promoted a cleanup campaign to encourage others to collect plastic waste along the shore to return the original beauty to the island.

One of the founding members, Tran Van Quynh, said when he moved from Hanoi to Ly Son for work and came across many pieces of plastic bags in the sea, he immediately came up with the idea of initiating a cleanup campaign to raise awareness of environmental issues among islanders as well as tourists.

The group members began posting photos of beaches filled with plastic waste and images of people collecting it on Facebook as a reminder for newcomers to Ly Son to stop throwing away trash on their beautiful home.

Islanders dive under the sea to collect hidden garbage thrown onto the beach. Photo: L.X.T / Tuoi Tre

Islanders dive under the sea to collect hidden garbage thrown onto the beach. Photo: L.X.T / Tuoi Tre

The campaign went viral when groups of youngsters volunteered to collect trash to set an example to visitors to Ly Son and garbage has not been seen ever since.

“We couldn’t have succeeded but for the help of local people and tourists,” said group member Nguyen Van Duoc.

Another member, Le Xuan Tho, 30, said that he was very proud of the result that came from their campaign and even took photos of the beautiful beach and then posted them on his personal Facebook account.

“Thanks to the hard work and efforts of people here, our old Ly Son has returned,” he said.

Nguyen Viet Vy, secretary of the district’s Party Committee, said that they have installed security cameras along the seashore to prevent illegal littering and also set a policy to fine those who throw garbage on the beach.

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