As part of its 10th National Cleanliness Campaign, Qatar’s Ministry of Environment will kick off a two-month-long initiative to clean up the nation’s beaches and other outdoor spaces.
Student volunteers and participants from other ministries and state institutions are expected to spend December and January working on improving environmental conditions here, the MOE said in a statement.
The move comes at a time when complaints about the state of Qatar’s public spaces have been increasing.
— Sticky33 @QA (@Tamerfayad33) November 14, 2014
As the weather cools down, many residents have been flocking to Qatar’s coastal areas to enjoy the water and the sand. But the increased presence of visitors has led to heavy littering, especially on the weekends.
In response, many volunteer groups across the country have been stepping up efforts in recent months to clean up beaches and environment sites like the mangroves.
The goal is not only to beautify Qatar’s shores but also to protect the environment. For example, Fuwairat beach is a popular breeding ground for Hawksbill turtles and during the peak breeding season, between April and July, a section of the beach is fenced off in a bid to protect their fragile nesting areas.
But this year especially, rubbish left in the sand confused the turtles, who find it difficult to return to the spot where they hatched to lay their eggs.
The MOE hasn’t yet provided details on how to participate in its new campaign, but on Twitter, has asked residents to report environment violations by calling 998.