By: Dr Judy Mann

On the 10th and 30th of November uShaka Sea World Education provided training for two groups of Department of Environmental Affairs Working for the Coast staff. These staff members have been engaged to remove nurdles from KwaZulu-Natal beaches, in addition to the normal coastal litter removal programmes. This initiative was in response to the recent nurdle spill from containers after the storm on the 10th October. The first group was from around Durban and the KZN south coast and the second group were from the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. The aim of the training was to explain the negative impacts of litter in our ocean, with the nurdles being a key focus. The training also introduced participants to the amazing variety of life in our oceans and the importance of caring for the ocean. After all healthy people need healthy oceans. A formal presentation was given and a practical demonstration of the different methods used to remove nurdles was displayed at uShaka Beach.

During the training it became clear that the majority of the participants had absolutely no idea of where waste is taken after it has been thrown in a bin. They couldn’t believe how plastic waste enters the environment and how this in turn affects humans. They promised to be more careful of their actions and are excited about embarking on the removal of nurdles from the beaches. This was a clear indication that more educational programmes need to be conducted for community groups in and around the province to ensure that people have a better understanding of their natural environment.

Written by: Nonhlanhla Ngwabe
uShaka Sea World Educator