Clean Beach Week took place over the weekend across Norway and almost 50,000 people turned up to take part.
The event, which is organised by Hold Norge Rent, drew over 20,000 participants in 2017, but involvement has skyrocketed ever since.
Lise Keilty Gulbransen, General Manager of Hold Norway Rent, said that “Strandryddedagen is Norway’s largest collective cleaning week, and this year we are experiencing greater interest and commitment than ever.”
The Strandryddeuken event ran from Monday 30 April to 6 May and the Beach Cleaning Day was the highlight of the event.
“The target is 100,000 volunteer cleaners in 2018, and we hope that twice as much waste will be collected as in 2017,” said Gulbransen before the event. The total amount of participants in Saturday’s cleanup came to around 45,000.
Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg even took part in the trash pickup, as did Minister of Climate and Environment Ola Elvestuen.
“The engagement is absolutely enormous. 45,000 are participating in the big beach cleaning day, which is more than double compared to last year,” said Elvestuen.
“This is perhaps the fastest growing environmental issue we have internationally, and it is a huge task to reverse the development. Eight million tons of plastic end up in the sea every year,” he said, adding, “We have to reverse the development and ensure that we have clean seas in future as well. To achieve this, we need to mobilize not only individuals, but also local organizations and companies, and the state must take responsibility.”
Group cleanups are becoming more popular around the world, to find out more about activities in your area, check your local council or environmentalist groups for details.