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Coega SEZ Coastal Clean-up – Cultivating a symbiotic existence with the natural environment - published 19 Sep 2022

Coega SEZ Coastal Clean-up – Cultivating a symbiotic existence with the natural environment

 

Coega Development Corporation (CDC) and Coega SEZ investor employees, led by the CDC Sustainability Unit, joined hands to clean the coastal area along Zone 10 of the SEZ.

 

 

Gqeberha, South Africa, 19 September 2022- On Friday, 16 September, the Coega Development Corporation (CDC) Sustainability Unit hosted the CDC’s first Coastal Clean-up Day. The event was in celebration of International Coastal Clean-up Day, observed annually on 17 September.

International Coastal Clean-up Day increases public awareness of the rising pollution on coastlines around the world and is celebrated as a commitment to the restoration of pristine coastal environments.

CDC employees joined by employees across the Coega SEZ investor pool, showed their support through participation. Tarryn Edwina Narain, Environmental Officer from Cemza (Pty) Ltd located in the Coega SEZ, shared her reasons for participating: “Not all heroes wear caps; some wear gloves and carry trash bags to clean the ocean. Since the ocean provides us with water and salt, let’s return the favour by cleaning it. Everyone needs access to clean and safe coastlines, and in order to achieve that goal, we must all cooperate”.

Nkululeko Mbangi, CDC Young Professional, shared that the clean-up helped him feel closer to nature. “The clean-up day made me feel a stronger connection to nature through the ocean—I felt good about helping the environment.”

Sisa Xabanisa, CDC Environmental Manager, shared the following statistic: "Since water is cyclical in nature, anything we put into the ocean will eventually return to us. For every kilometre of ocean, there are at least 46,000 pieces of plastic floating within that distance. If these trends continue, it won’t be long before we face disastrous outcomes for our environment.”

Telly Chauke, CDC Chief Sustainability Officer, said, "Thank you to our ‘sea stars’, the coordinators, organisers, and investors for keeping the light of hope alive. We all had a part in stopping the tide of rising marine debris. Although we are conscious that this action may only be a ‘drop in the bucket’ compared to the disaster caused by marine pollution, it still demonstrates our care for the oceans, which are vital to our continued survival on this one and only planet”.

The CDC owns and operates a world-class SEZ, with current and planned investments within its borders, including the Aquaculture Development Zone and Desalination Plant. It is therefore of paramount importance to observe coastal conservation and cleanliness as a green practice by the CDC in support of the Goal 14 “Life Below Water” of the Sustainable Development Goals, to cultivate the SEZ’s symbiotic existence with the natural environment, promote environmental stewardship, and ultimately, sustainable development.

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