AAIB’s Environmental Awareness Spreads Across Egypt’s North Coast during Summer
Almost 1 million seabirds and 100,000 marine animals have been killed or harmed by marine debris primarily because either they become entangled in it, or, they mistake plastic debris for food and ingest it, resulting in malnutrition, starvation and potentially death. It has been estimated that around 80% of marine debris are from land-based sources and the remaining 20% is from ocean-based sources.
AAIB’s “Clean Coast” Awareness Campaign hits Egyptian coastline beaches
Summer has witnessed the launching of the AAIB’s social media campaign “Keep the Coast Clean”, in Arabic “khally el sa7el sa7er” which aimed to spread awareness on beach pollution solutions for a clean north coast.
A Competition for Engagement in Behavioral Change
Alongside the “Keep the Coast Clean” Social Media campaign, a competition was set to engage people in adopting an environment-friendly living approach. The prize was a Peugeot Bicycle. As a motivation for individuals to substitute commuting by car and hence have a healthy lifestyle. Participants had to repeat the name of the campaign “5ally el sa7el sa7er” 10 times repetitively quickly. Videos of highest votes, were pronounced winners each weekend. Out of 184 participants, there were 14 winners as follows:
AAIB’s Clay Ashtrays... Inspired by Nature for Nature
AAIB also had a strong presence in several compounds in Egypt’s North Coast with clay made ashtrays for cigarette butts as well as 50 recycling bins for waste available for Telal residents to keep the beaches clean.
AAIB & Beach Audience Beat the 5 Beach Devils in Telal North Coast
A booth was set in Telal North Coast to raise awareness on the pollution of coastlines and its impact on maritime life. AAIB highlighted the five key beach pollutants:
Plastic bags, Cigarette butts, Plastic bottles, Glass bottles and Cans; Each pollutant was given a personalized cartoon character and were named Beach Devils.
The five “Beach Devil” characters were showcased in Telal North Coast’s booth in the form of large cutouts. Flyers with facts related to coastline pollution were printed and handed out on Telal’s beach. Telal residents were then questioned on the facts presented in the fliers that had been handed out. When they answered correctly, they were given free t-shirts that had one of the Beach Devils printed on the front side.
For an extra mile of fun, AAIB in collaboration with Silly Snaps set a photo booth where those interested in engaging were able to get there photo taken and printed on the spot in a photo template showcasing the five Beach Devils.
The five beach devils are an AAIB creation that relates the five most found waste items on the coastlines to funny easily digested cartoons. The five items are categorized as follows:
- Plastic bags are one of the two top items found on beaches. Since water keeps the plastic cool and algae help block the ultraviolet rays, every piece of plastic made in the last 50 years has made its way into the seas and oceans and is still out there wrapping around living corals suffocating and killing them.
- Cigarette butts may seem small, but with several trillion littered every year worldwide, the toxic chemicals add up. Even when fish, birds, whales, or other marine creatures don’t ingest them mistaking them for food, wind and rain carry them out into the water where the chemicals in the cigarette filters leak out, threatening the quality of the water and the creatures that live in it.
- Cans are mostly made of aluminum. Aluminum unlike almost all other metals does not rust. Aluminum instead reacts with the air creating a coat around it that protects it from rusting and degrading. When you throw a can on the beach, it will still be there next year.
- Glass bottles (Sodas and Juice) can take up to hundreds of thousands of years to degrade and become one with nature again. If a glass bottle makes it to the bottom of the sea or ocean intact, it will sit there for millions of years not affected by the pressure or water, and since ultraviolet light will not reach it, it might not biodegrade at all. If it does not and it stays on the beaches and shores, the shards of glass will either be consumed by marine animals, or lead to human injuries.
- Plastic bottles that are disposed of improperly never fully biodegrade, although a combination of light rays and water help degrade the bottles, tiny pieces of plastic remain. These pieces are ingested and end up in the stomachs of countless marine animals and shorebirds that in return are consumed by you when you eat seafood-introducing plastic to our food chain.