World Cleanup Day: 10 Ways to Keep the Environment Around You Clean

Today is World Cleanup Day. Here are 10 ways to keep the environment around you clean:

  1. Dispose of your waste appropriately. Use litter bins (at home or in designated areas in town). If you are in a car, do not hurl your waste out (through the window as most of us are often do). If there is no bin in the car, hold on to the content until you get to a point where you can properly dispose of it without littering the environment.
  1. Decline the single-use items. These include polythene, plastic bottles, straws, cans, disposable eating utensils and so on. These items are often non-biodegradable and lead to pollution of the environment and death of threatened marine and terrestrial life. Refusing to use these single-use items will not only lead to an ulittered environment but also save lives as well.
  1. Carry a reusable shopping bag or basket. Make it a habit to carry a reusable bag, kyondo/kiondo or the ‘Uhuru’ bag every time you go to the shop, market or supermarket for foodstuffs. This helps reduce the consumption of the non-biodegradable single-use polythene bags.
  1. Invest in a reusable water bottle. Apart from reducing reliance on disposable or single-use plastic bottles, a reusable water bottle will save you a lot of money in the end. 
  1. Reuse. Find new ways to use the reusable ‘trash’ around you. For example, instead of throwing away cans or plastic containers, use them to hold items such as stationery in the house or office. Turn old clothes into cleaning rags.
  1. Recycle. Use waste to make new items that can be used again. These remade items can be sold making this an income-generating venture, creating employment opportunities. Watch these inspiring examples: https://youtu.be/sEsp9Ms2d4c and https://youtu.be/x-pSA-zbESQ
  1. Practice composting. Convert the organic waste generated at home into compost manure. This will not only reduce the amount of waste ending up in the environment or landfills but also contribute greatly towards improving the of productivity of your soil, saving on costs of buying fertilizer and protecting you and the environment from the harmful effects of the chemical in the inorganic fertilizers. 
  1. Donate items. Remember, one’s trash is another person’s treasure. Instead of throwing away things you don’t need anymore, for example, clothes, utensils, electronics, furniture, books, magazines, tools, etc. donate them to the needy, children’s home for example. You will not only be reducing waste but also helping others.
  1. Observe laws and policies governing waste management. Kenya banned the use of single-use polythene in 2017 and restricted the use of plastic bottles in the protected areas early this year. Kindly observe and adhere to these laws and policies. They are made to protect us, the environment and all forms of life around us.
  1. Support the initiatives that promote a clean environment or neighbourhood for example the Keep Kenya Clean and Green campaign by Kenya Environmental Education Network

If we follow these ways, we will be so responsible that there will be no need to organize cleanup activities. The idea, after all, is for each and every one of us to be concerned and caring enough to play an individual part in ensuring a clean and safe environment for all.

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