One bright sunny day my friend and I decided to go to the beach to have fun. So we packed our bags and left for the beach. When we arrived at the beach we were annoyed because the bumboclaat beach ground was filthy. The pollution of our beaches is an issue that we need to address once and for all.
Beach pollutants are harmful to both humans and animals and are materials introduced intentionally and inadvertently by individuals and organizations to the environment. Pollutants cause a reduction of the beach’s recreational attractiveness and are an increasing threat to public health.
A constant problem is the solid wastes that are dumped on or are washed up on beaches used for bathing. Solid wastes are derived from many sources including illegal dumping from ships at sea; wastes from urban and agricultural environments washed down in rivers or storm gullies and then carried by inshore currents towards the beaches; wind-driven wastes; and negligence by users of the beach. There is no single cure for this problem but public education and strict enforcement of the Litter Act and the NRCA Act must be prominent in any reformative measure. There are several factors which have an effect on the recreational, coastal and marine water quality including the discharge of sewage and industrial effluent into the coastal and marine waters; non-point source discharges from agricultural activities and urban runoff; modifications of natural systems (including the destruction of wetlands). In addition, water sports, boating, yachting, fishing, and commercial shipping activities generate and discharge wastes into the nearshore waters.
Pollution of beaches results in a reduction of oxygen levels in the harbor, the proliferation and overabundance of phytoplankton, the accumulation of toxic chemicals, the increased levels of bacteria and other disease-carrying organisms, a severe decline and destruction of its fishery potential and the loss of marine organisms and habitats particularly the benthic components.
I saw some people at the beach, and my friend said, “Bumboclaat people must stop messing up the beach.”The lifeguard was there and he said to me,
‘Miss, mi tired fi tell them not to throw the garbage on the beach. See di garbage bin there and people still throw garbage all over the grounds and on the sand.”
I could see how angry he was about what was happening and I had to try to calm him down.
Many persons are of the perception that it’s okay to just throw garbage on the ground if a bin is not readily available. There is also the view that littering creates work for beach cleaners and also provides a source of food for animals. Although the beach is a public, the grounds and public facilities should be kept clean to prevent diseases and contamination of the water used for bathing and swimming.
Jamaicans need to stop ignoring the bumboclaat signs that are placed on beach compound encouraging them to keep the place clean as it is for their own safety and for good health practices.
After listening to us the security guard came with a rake and started to clean up the bumboclaat beach. We were happy so we went to the changing room to put on our bathing suits. When we came out, we saw another person helping him to clean up the grounds. So we went into the water and had fun.