Saturday, May 25, 2024

SPHS students join Hol Chan Marine Reserve in the National Coastal and Riverways clean-up

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A group of students from the San Pedro High School (SPHS) participated along with the Hol Chan Marine Reserve in the annual National Coastal and Riverways clean-up, held on Saturday, October 7th. In San Pedro, the clean-up occurred on the island’s northern coast, Robles Beach—a popular area for sea turtle nesting.
The Hol Chan Marine Reserve said that the involvement of students in the activity was significant. According to the reserve’s management, this is one way to teach students the importance of caring for the environment. The northern beaches are a popular getaway for islanders on weekends, but many do not take care of this fragile area and, most of the time, litter the area. Another source of the accumulated rubbish on these beaches is discarded items on riverways emptying into the sea from the mainland and other coastal communities. According to Hol Chan, this tarnishes the area’s beauty and threatens marine creatures like sea turtles nesting on these isolated coastal beaches.
During the clean-up, students collected data on the types of rubbish found along the coastline at Robles Beach. Hol Chan highlighted that Green, Loggerhead, and Hawksbill Turtles nest in this area. Thus, keeping trash-free is essential. Hol Chan reported 88 sea turtle nests up to the first week in October. As per their data, the species breakdown of the nests notes 35 belonging to Loggerhead Turtles, 22 Green Turtle nests, and seven nests of Hawksbills. The marine reserve also reported that there have been 3,555 hatchlings, mostly belonging to the Loggerhead species, followed by Green Turtles and Hawksbills.
After the beach clean-up, this area at Robles was relieved from the rubbish, which was creating an eyesore on this northern coastal area of San Pedro. All the garbage collected was taken to downtown San Pedro, where the San Pedro Town Council sanitation personnel assisted in its proper disposal. The Hol Chan Marine Reserve thanked everyone who participated in the activity and hopes it can send a message to everyone on the island to be more considerate and join the efforts in taking care of the environment.

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