Fishermen Islanders edged to keep oceans free of plastics

Fishermen Islanders edged to keep oceans free of plastics

By Alu Aluvula

The community of Fishermen Island, have been edged by NCD Governor Hon Powes Parkop to stop throwing plastics and all forms of inorganic waste into the sea.

The call came after Mr Parkop, City Manager Bernard Kipit and NCDC management and staff of the Commission and the Governor’s Office boarded a PNG Defence Force Naval vessel for an hours trip to and back from the Island yesterday (Sunday 20th June, 2021).

As part of the World Environment Day commemorations, the Governor continued to lead by example in creating awareness to the NCD communities by speaking on the protection of marine life, encouraging tree planting and curbing the use of plastic bags as littering of such inorganic has become a destruction to the natural environment.

When the Governor arrived at the island, he immediately begun his mission by issuing waste bags and hand gloves for his entourage to begin walking through the island towards the village collecting waste found on the island including (all forms of paper bags and plastic rubbish (for e.g) bread and biscuit plastic packets waste, baby diapers waste, tin food stuff waste as well as can drinks and water bottle waste.

Mr Parkop then spoke to the community of the importance of protecting marine life by not leaving waste on the beach for the sea to take back in or simply not throwing it back into the sea.

He also encouraged the villagers on the island to further collect all their waste and place into waste bags. These waste products (waste bags and gloves) would then be provided by the NCDC in partnership with Total Waste Management (TWM) where the availability of a waste plant outside Roku village would be used to decompose these waste products. All the villagers had to do was to collect, assort (plastics/papers to be separated from tins/cans etc) and assemble all their waste products into these bags, that would be picked up by a loading and unloading vessel from the Island to the Roku village waste plant, on a weekly basis.

Apart from collecting and speaking on the management of waste, the Governor also spoke on the importance of tree planting and the contributing factors trees give off to the environment in terms the oxygen they provide to the human and wildlife (birds and wild animals). He said that protection of the PNG’s rainforest, which is the fourth largest in the world meant that PNG played a very vital role contributing to world climate change and protection of its trees and replanting of felled trees, to maintain these contributing international factors was also of paramount importance.

The villagers were further encouraged to maintain certain species of fish, like not catching the ‘parrot fish’ as they also contribute immensely to the marine life’s coral production making this species of fish vital to marine life productivity and especially giving endangered species a chance to reproduce in the waters. One such marine living species that is now an endangered species, is turtle family, which is hardly found now within the waters of the islands.

Mr Parkop also took the opportunity during the visit and in honor of the late Commissioner Augerea Kilamanu, to present ten eskys to the villagers with a further ten to be taken up soon into the future, coupled with the presentation of a cheque to the late commissioners son, Russel Augerea of K25,000.