MEMBERS of the public came together as a team on Labour Day (May 1) to participate in the communal clean-up programme at the Karpal Singh Drive.
The programme was jointly organised by the Malaysia Rotary Yoneyama Alumni Association (MRYA) and the Centre for Marine and Coastal Studies (CEMACS) of Universiti Sains Malaysia.
It was also supported by the Sungai Pinang assemblyman Lim Siew Khim and her team.
Prof Datuk Dr Aileen Tan, who is the Head of CEMACS, said the communal clean-up was also about implementing the concept of citizen scientist where the volunteers would be collecting data on the types of rubbish collected.
“The volunteers would be using the ocean thrash data form to fill up the particulars of the rubbish picked up.
“This will help us to find out the origins of the thrash, whether it was thrown by the visitors to the Karpal Singh Drive or brought to the shore by the waves.
“The data collection will be submitted to an international organisation called the Ocean Conservancy,” she said.
In relation to this, Lim sent a strong message to the public to stop littering and to be more conscious of the environment.
“Our council workers do their clean-up daily in the morning and even sometimes in the evening but our visitors to the Karpal Singh Drive seem not have civic consciousness.
“Although we provide rubbish bins in the area and the bins are like 20 or 30 steps away, they just leave the rubbish everywhere.
“This then makes the whole area look messy, giving it an impression that the council workers are not doing their job. This is not fair to them.
“No compromise, everyone should know that they should not litter. Please take care of our environment,” Lim said.
Lim also appealed to the Penang Island City Council (MBPP) to place enforcement officers at the Karpal Singh Drive area to catch the litter bugs.
Meanwhile, MBPP councillor Nicholas Tan said the council would be increasing its litter bug operation at the Karpal Drive Singh.
“Formerly, the council workers would start their clean-up work at 8am and then it was changed to 7am. Now, for the holiday season, they start as early as 5am.
“Starting work earlier than 7am is overtime. It is like an additional expense for the council.
“I would like to urge the public to be more responsible with their thrash. This is because the council must bear the extra expenses to clean up the thrash thrown.
“If everyone is civic conscious and throw the rubbish into the bin, then we can reduce all these extra costs.
“The council is also coming up with other measures to curb the issue, one of which is to increase the litter bug operation,” Tan said.
Consul-general of Japan in Penang Orikasa Hiroyuki, who also joined the communal activity, lauded the organisers for coming up with such an event.
MRYA president Dr Wong Lai Yong was also present during the event.
It is learned that the MRYA is active in holding communal clean-up programme at the Karpal Singh Drive from time to time.
Several members of the Lions Club of Penang Rising Star also participated in the programme.
Story & Pix by Tanushalini Moroter