On Saturday 27th October 2007, underwater cameraman Simon Enderby drove to the fishing town of Kudat – 3hrs north of Sabah’s capital Kota Kinabalu – the very tip of Borneo. He joined 7 other speakers to discuss a variety of marine issues related to the surrounding open seas, coral reefs & beaches to conclude the Kudat Environment Week, organised by WWF Malaysia and the newly built Kudat Turtle Conservation Society.
While the other speakers discussed fisheries management, research, the gazetting of marine parks and deployment of Turtle Exclusion Devices (TEDs) in trawl nets, Simon spoke about the role and importance of using images – both film and photographs, to show the beauty, abundance and fragility of the marine environment towards creating awareness and conveying these important conservation messages to people more effectively. Simon also talked about the need to develop responsible eco-tourism around Sabah’s coastline and islands to help draw in greater tourist revenue. He suggested this focus will add even greater value to the preservation of the marine environment encouraging tourism operators themselves to become more proactive in protecting the marine environment they wish to share, and profit from.
The following day, Simon filmed and photographed over 100 volunteers from Kudat and Kota Kinabalu who began the truly mammoth task of cleaning the local beach just a stones throw away from the S.M. St. Peters school, 5 minutes outside Kudat. Tidal currents, recent storms and a relatively newly constructed seawall had over the last year piled high with water-borne refuse all along this stretch of beach. The sight of walls of rubbish was shocking to say the least, and extremely daunting for the 140 volunteers of adults and children who embarked on clearing this rubbish.
After 3 grueling hours of collection and separating into recyclable and non-recyclable categories, nearly 5 tons of rubbish were collected. This consisted of the following:
Non-recyclable: 4,688 kg (4.7 tons)
Glass: 55 kg
Steel/Aluminium: 2 kg
Plastic bottle: 53 kg
By filming, photographing and supporting events like these, Scubazoo hopes to help to raise public awareness and try ensure Sabah’s incredible marine environment is protected and conserved for future generations to come.
For more information on the beach clean up and Kudat Environment week please click on the following links;