Styrofoam is yet again a major culprit in contaminating the eastern waters of Hong Kong, according to NGO Living Seas Hong Kong.

Styrofoam everywhere. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

David O’Dwyer, the chairman of the organisation, said that the main source of styrofoam is packaging and lunch boxes.

A volunteer among all types of trash. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

Volunteers from the group participated in the 2016 Hong Kong Cleanup campaign last Saturday by clearing Bayside Beach and Clearwater Bay.

Removing waste. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

They were split into two teams – one that cleaned underwater litter and another that cleared the shoreline.

A volunteer in the diving team. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

The teams collected almost 500 kilograms of rubbish this year, compared to 2015, when 351 kilograms were collected by a greater number of volunteers.

500 kilograms of rubbish. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

Living Seas Hong Kong said that the beach was “found in poor condition [during] this year’s cleanup” and that there was “more plastic and polystyrene than they have seen in recent cleanups.”

Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

It also said that “styrofoam waste [breaks] down into thousands and thousands of very small pieces” and “extra effort was needed to remove them.” It called for a larger effort to halt the build-up of trash.

Rubbish everywhere. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

As part of the campaign, the types and quantity of trash are recorded and analysed to better understand and resolve the issue.

Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.
Cleaning up. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.
Volunteers pose with collected trash. Photo: Living Seas Hong Kong.

Chantal Yuen

Chantal Yuen is a Hong Kong journalist interested in issues dealing with religion and immigration. She majored in German and minored in Middle Eastern studies at Princeton University.