CALAO Association, a civil society organization based in Cape Verde, has registered its commitment to The Ocean Conference to protect the islands' biodiversity from marine debris. This commitment is focused on SDG target 14.1 to reduce marine pollution.
The Cabo Verdean islands are suffering from a steady flow of plastic debris carried by the Oceanic current. They accumulate mostly on the Eastern shores of the archipelago, putting at risk the islands' marine fauna and biodiversity.
The combination of the Canary marine current (along the African coast) and the Trade Winds pushes a constant flow of debris, which are mainly produced by the international fishing industry. Containers, fishing nets, and plastic bottle represent around 90% of the collected debris.
CALAO's first beach clean-up took place in October 2015. Since then they have collected more than 9 tons of plastic debris from 6 different isolated beaches. Working with students from middle high schools and unemployed people from the island capital Espargos, they receive logistical support from the 2nd Regiment of Espargos.
Currently the debris collected through the clean-ups is disposed of in the central landfill. Hence, CALAO's next goal is to establish a recycling unit to help the island process the masses of garbage generated by the booming tourism industry, in consultation with key stakeholders, including hoteliers and city hall.
Read more about CALAO's commitment in the Commitment Registry: https://oceanconference.un.org/commitments/?id=14087#sthash.Ec69hqen.dpuf
Feeling inspired? Register your commitment – big or small – to protect the ocean here: https://oceanconference.un.org/commitments/