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"Little by little, a little becomes a lot".

Every little bit counts and helps! We are proud to be part of the SEILO team. SEILO Stands for SE Impacting Lives through Opportunities. SEILO is a volunteer organization that aims to improve the environment and support communities. We complete our mission mostly by conducting environmental campaigns through beach clean-ups, tree plantings, and spreading information via blog posts and posters; as well as community support through fundraising, sharing opportunities, promoting talents and the list goes on.

Our latest cleanup was conducted in Birch Cove park on November 7th, 2020. That park is located in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada. On this day, the space was primarily used by people out walking, sometimes with dogs. The park was also being used as a photo shoot location, as well as a place for socializing with friends in hammocks.

Birch Cove Park is a roughly 2 square kilometre public park located along Lake Banook in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. The park consists of a sandy beach, walking trails through a small wooded area, a grassy open space, as well as a parking lot. When we were there, there were a lot of people walking down the trails.

We collected around 20.95 lbs of litter (9,5 kg) that day. The total area cleaned including shoreline and park trails was approximately 1.5 miles. The most common brands found were Tim Hortons, McDonald's, Keith's beer. Plastic bottles, beer cans, cigarette butts were most common litter items picked up. We also found unusual items such as blender cap, clothing, condom. As expected, there were many cigarette butts along the more populated central path. The shoreline was remarkably clean. In this area, small bits of styrofoam were found.

Many thanks to our sponsors (Great Nova Scotia Pick Me Up and Glad) for the garbage bags and appreciations go to all our supporters for the encouraging words.

It is very rewarding and satisfying knowing that we were able to remove six bags from the park and divert it to garbage and recycling facilities. We received positive feedback from several groups of park-goes, with one group commenting that they were appreciative of our cleanup efforts.

While garbage cleanups are vitally important to keep our environment clean, we cannot fully address our waste issue without tackling the root of the problem. Do you know that 80% of ocean plastics come from land-based sources? According to the UNEP leaders, every year we abandon 8 million plastic garbage in the water. This plastic debris has huge impacts on habitats, transports chemical pollutants, threatens life below water, and negatively affects freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems. All trash is harmful to nature including wildlife and humans but the most devastating one is plastic trash.

We cannot fully avoid using plastics but saying no to single-use plastics is a great start. Here are 6 ways that will help us to avoid single-use plastics:

  1. Drink tap water or buy glass bottles.

  2. Avoid plastic bags and use Eco-bags which can be reused (keep them with you)

  3. Travel with your water bottle (stainless still bottles for instance).

  4. Avoid snacks with single-use plastic packages.

  5. Pick up alternative straws.

  6. Use fabric napkins and handkerchiefs.

It is not easy but together, we can do this. If you cannot reuse it, then just refuse it!

Last but not least, thanks a million to our amazing team for this great work!

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