x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Dubai begins annual clean-up campaign

DUBAI // The emirate yesterday launched its annual clean-up campaign, hoping that tens of thousands of people will volunteer to beautify their neighbourhoods. Rashid bin Fahd, the Minister for Environment and Water inaugurated the 16th year of the campaign at Al Mamzar Park, along with Hussain Lootah, the municipality's director general, and hundreds of volunteering schoolchildren.

The pupils started the three-day campaign by cleaning the park and the Mamzar beach area. "The ministry would like to support the efforts of Dubai Municipality to clean up the country and to make people aware of the effects of littering," said Mr bin Fahd. Mr Lootah added that this year's campaign would also focus on environmental protection, including waste reduction, recycling and safe disposal of waste.

Litter bins will be distributed to schools and abandoned vehicles removed. Painting competitions will also be held at several schools and colleges. On Friday, thousands of volunteers from private companies, non-governmental organisations, and community groups will gather for a cleanup in Nadd al Shiba. There will also be clean-ups at Wadi al Amradi, the Ras al Khor natural sanctuary and labour camp areas including Al Quoz, Nadd al Hamr, Al Khawaneej, Al Aweer and Al Qusais.

Other areas due to receive attention include the Jaddaf Fishermen's Village, Jumeirah-1 Fishermen's Village, Heritage Village, Jumeirah and Umm Suqeim public beaches, industrial areas and the Jebel Ali free zone. To persuade smokers not to drop their cigarette butts, officials will hand out pocket "portable ashtrays", which will also be given away at several municipal centres. The municipality has warned that those caught dropping cigarette butts will be fined Dh500 (US$135).

pmenon@thenational.ae