Celebrate National Day with a Coastal Cleanup @ Lim Chu Kang East (Sat 05 Aug 2017)

Every year, volunteers with the International Coastal Cleanup Singapore (ICCS) celebrate National Day with a coastal cleanup @ Lim Chu Kang beach and mangrove. This year we will be working @ Lim Chu Kang East on Saturday 5th Aug 2017: 8.00am – 10.30am.

To join us, Sign up here by 1st August 2017! (Indicate if you need transport by selecting the right ticket type)
Transport will be provided from Kranji MRT to the cleanup site @ Lim Chu Kang East.9486212038_7f04cca62c_k

Why do we conduct coastal cleanups? Habitats along Singapore’s coastlines host an amazing biodiversity and trash present in these areas impact our wildlife adversely and devalue the natural beauty of the landscape. Coastal cleanups conducted by volunteers around the world remove this trash, raise awareness about the impact of marine trash, and motivate us to work towards solutions including sustainable daily practises.

Lim Chu Kang East is an unprotected but precious patch of wetland, located in the northwest of Singapore. Incoming trash from the Johor Straits is regularly deposited on the shoreline and impacts the animals, plants and the organisms of the ecosystem there.

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Meeting Point: Participants can meet at the bus stop outside Kranji MRT (Bus code: 45139) and will be transported to the cleanup site at Lim Chu Kang Lane 9, or meet us at the venue itself.

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Itinerary 

  • 07.45am – Bus pick up at bus stop outside Kranji MRT (Bus code: 45139)
  • 08.15am – Bus arrives at the Lim Chu Kang Lane 9. Apply insect repellant, collect gloves and trash bags. Safety and procedure briefing.
  • 08.30am – Cleanup begins
  • 09.45am – End of cleanup; transport trash bags to Trash Collection Points.
  • 10.00am – Trash is weighed and moved to the Trash Disposal Point; debrief.
  • 10.15am – Participants clean up; there are no public amenities in this area and your legs must be clean to enter the bus. So bring some water.
  • 10.30am – Bus departs for Kranji MRT.

Things to note:

  1. Transport to Lim Chu Kang East, gloves, trash bags and weighing scales are provided.
  2. You must wear hard-soled covered shoes or booties to to protect your feet from hazards, else you will not be allowed to work in the area.
  3. A change of clothes is recommended after a sweaty workout.
  4. You must be clean to enter the bus – bring a cloth and extra water to do this.
  5. Long pants are recommended to protect your legs from insect bites.
  6. We will continue the cleanup in rain (bring rain gear) but cease if there is threat of lightning.

Things to bring:

  1. Water bottle (with at least one litre of water)
  2. Hat and/ or sun block
  3. Reusable raincoat / poncho (we will work in light rain)
  4. Towel to wipe off sand and mud
  5. Change of clothes for public transport.

Be prepared:

  1. Sleep early the night before
  2. Have a decent breakfast – it’s hard work!
  3. Be punctual – the bus is unable to wait for latecomers; and the tide waits for no one!
  4. Refer to this recce report of Lim Chu Kang beach and mangrove.
  5. Please read our advice to participants to prepare yourself for the cleanup!

Thank you for caring for our planet!

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Earth Day coastal cleanup @ Coney Island this Sat 22 Apr 2017 with Adrian, Jen & Beth!

Celebrate Earth Day (Sat 22 Apr 2017: 9.00am) with a coastal cleanup at Coney Island with Adrian, Jen & Beth! Meet them at the West Entrance, they will provide trash bag and gloves! Sign up at their registration page.

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Adrian, Jen & Beth and friends have tackled marine trash on the shores of Singapore by contributing to year-round coastal cleanups both as participants and organisers for several years now.

Having tackled marine trash at Sungei Seletar, Tanah Merah and Chek Jawa in previous years, they are heading to Coney Island this Earth Day as the marine trash situation there requires attention.

Thanks to NParks for providing trash bags and gloves, and coordinating trash removal after the cleanup!

Adrian & Beth featured in The Straits Times
for the World Wetlands Day coastal cleanup last February

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Sat 01 April 2017: 7.30am – Join us for a very muddy World Water Day mangrove cleanup @ Lim Chu Kang

Join NUS Toddycats for the third year-round coastal cleanup at Lim Chu Kang. We are determined to clear this area of marine debris and plan to get muddy as we venture deeper into the mangrove this time. Working alongside us on the beach will be volunteers from NUS SAVE.

Transport is provided for 40 people (be sure to choose the right ticket), read all the details (itinerary, safety, site details) at the Eventbrite registration page.

Click for event details
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888kg of marine trash removed from Lim Chu Kang during the Chinese New Year/World Wetlands Day coastal cleanup

67 NUS Toddycats & Friends battled trash at Lim Chu Kang mangrove on Sat 4th Feb 2017 and removed 888kg of trash. Huat ah!

The scene at Lim Chu Kang beach during a recce on 14th January 2017 was really one we had expected. Despite six coastal cleanups between Feb – Sep last year, the inflow of trash from the Johor Straits is ceaseless, and high loads of trash wash in over the monsoon season.

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The same grim sight greeted the advance party conducting the pre-cleanup recce on the morning of 4th of February 2017, as they checked for hornet nests (which would require the cleanup to be cancelled), mangrove pit vipers (which we would be careful to avoid disturbing), and crocodiles (which we would encourage either the crocodile or ourselves to leave the site).

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There was enough of us and we worked hard and fast in that 90 minutes. The final “prosperity” figure of 888kg of trash was purely accidental, and I was actually hoping we’d clear at least one tonne of trash. A chain gang was organised and we transferred the trash out to the pre-arranged Trash Disposal Point. Later that day, an NEA contractor despatched by the Department of Public Cleanliness would remove the load and see to its disposal. Like most of our solid waste trash in Singapore, all of it is destined for the incinerator and its ash will be sent to the landfill at Pulau Semakau.

The 888kg amount made for a good byline later that day as a Straits Times reporter and photographer had accompanied us and posted reports the same day and on the next day, with video.

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  • “888kg of rubbish cleared during mangrove clean-up on 8th day of Chinese New Year,” by Zhaki Abdullah with video, and with photos by Alphonsus Chern. The Straits Times, 04 Feb 2017 [link] [video].
  • “Almost 900kg of rubbish cleared from Lim Chu Kang mangrove,” by Zhaki Abdullah with photos by Alphonsus Chern. The Straits Times, 05 Feb 2017 [link]

There is still trash left behind and other Year-Round Coastal Cleanups will continue to whittle away the trash load surely and sensitively.

LCK  CNY World Wetlands Day Coastal Cleanup 04 Feb 2017

Photo album by Kenneth Pinto on Flickr. Thanks to NUS Toddycats Airani S, Ng Kai Scene, Joelle Lai, Adriane Lee, Yang Yi Yong, Ong Say Lin & Joleen Chan.

21 Year-Round Coastal Cleanups in 2016 – here’s to more tender loving care for our coasts!

Organisers are welcome to organise cleanups at any time of the year besides the annual data-gathering International Coastal Cleanup Singapore in September. During these Year-Round Coastal Cleanups (YRCC), data cards are set aside but we record the number and weight of the black trash bags for an estimate of the trash load at these sites, which we report on this blog.

We do invite individual volunteers as participants to some of these Year Round Cleanups, and you can stay informed, either by signing up for our mailing list, or by following this blog, our twitter feed or Facebook page.

To find out more about the four types of beaches (Categories A to D) an Organiser can tackle on their own, please see “Suggestions for Year Round Coastal Cleanups”. The help is welcome indeed and we suggest Organisers maximise their efforts by conducting more than one cleanup per year.

Last year, 21 YRCCs were organised by various groups – and multiple cleanups were organised by Bukit Batok Secondary School, NUS Toddycats, NUS High, Mediacorp and Adrian Lim and Friends. The most euphoric of these was our annual National Day mangrove cleanup alongside out stalwart Independents and NUS Toddycats. We shifted the cleanup to the tough site of Lim Chu Kang East Mangrove for the first time and did a really great job!

Here’s is to more love for our mangroves, beaches and shores in 2017!

2016 Year Round Cleanups

    • Wed 20 Jan 2016 – Pasir Ris 6 (PR6) by Bukit Batok Secondary School
    • Sat 09 Jan 2016 – Sungei Pandan Mangrove (SP2) by NUS Bachelor of Environmental Studies Community Education/Engagement Branch (BES CEB)

    • Mon 22 Feb 2016 – Chinese New Year coastal cleanup @ Tanah Merah (TM7) by NUS RVRC star and students [link]
    • Sat 27 Feb 2016 – Lim Chu Kang beach (LCK) cleanup by NTU Earthlink, Singapore Pools & Independents [link]
    • Sat 27 Feb 2016 – Pasir Ris 6 (PR6) by Bukit Batok Secondary School

    • Sat 26 March 2016 – Singapore World Water Day Sungei Pandan Mangrove (SP2) cleanup by NUS Toddycats/ICCS & Independents [link]
    • Sat 26 March 2016 – Singapore World Water Day Lim Chu Kang (LCK) cleanup by NUS College of Alice and Peter Tan

    • Sat 09 Apr 2016 – Pasir Ris 6 (PR6) by Bukit Batok Secondary School [link]
    • Sat 23 Apr 2016 – Earth Day cleanup @ Pasir Ris 6 (PR6) by Mediacorp [link]

    • Sun 08 May 2016 – Op (We) Lim Chu Kang mangrove (LCK) cleanup by NUS Toddycats/ICCS & Independents [link]
    • Wed 11 May 2016 – Sungei Pandan Mangrove (SP2) by NUS High
    • Fri 27 May 2016 – Coney Island Beach A by St. Andrew’s Junior School staff

    • Mon 27 Jun 2016 – Lim Chu Kang (LCK) by Danone, Google & NUS Toddycats/ICCS
    • Sat 04 Jun 2016 – World Environment Day cleanup @ Pasir Ris 6 (PR6) by Mediacorp [link]
    • Fri 10 Jun 2016 – World Oceans Day cleanup @ Coney Island Beach A by L’Oréal Singapore

    • Jul 2016 – Sungei Pandan Mangrove (SP2) by NUS High
    • 16 Jul 2016 – Sungei Seletar (SS1) by Adrian Lim & Friends

    • Sat 06 Aug 2016 – National Day Lim Chu Kang mangrove cleanup by NUS Toddycats/ICCS & Independents
    • Sat 06 Aug 2016 – Pasir Ris 6 (PR6) by Bukit Batok Secondary School

    • 11 Nov 2016 – Tanah Merah 5 (TM5) by Adrian Lim & Friends
    • 12 Nov 2016 – Sungei Pandan Mangrove (SP2) by NUS High

Sat 04 Feb 2017: 7.45am – 11.00am @ Lim Chu Kang – Let’s throw out the trash this Chinese New Year

Help throw out the trash this Chinese New Year with a Coastal Cleanup @ Lim Chu Kang beach and mangrove on Saturday 4th Feb 2017: 7.45am – 11.00am. Join us in extending some tender loving care to one of our precious mangrove fragments in Singapore. But you will need to ready for hard work, properly fitted out and ready for action – this is not for the faint-hearted!

Transport will be provided from Kranji MRT.

Please sign up by Wed 1st Feb 2017.

For details, please head over to the Eventbrite Registration page. Do read the details about safety and preparation please.

Lim Chu Kang beach, Sat 14 Jan 2017

Happy birthday Singapore! From 90 volunteers who celebrated with a mangrove cleanup!

Once again, members of the public joined NUS Toddycats in commemorating National Day by coming together to clear marine trash from our precious mangroves – 90 volunteers cleared half a tonne of trash (573kg) in 103 trash bags from Lim Chu Kang East mangrove this year.

The cleanup was relocated to this tougher site as our usual site at Lim Chu Kang beach and mangrove has received enough tender loving care of late that it remains relatively clean – encouraging news indeed!

Before the buses from Kranji MRT with most of the buses arrived, a pre-cleanup check of the site was conducted. We identified two beautiful mangrove pit vipers in LCK East mangrove and marked off the area to ensure they would not disturbed by the cleanup crew.

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The 90 volunteers were sorted into groups of 10 led by team leaders who were pushed through four insertion points into Lim Chu Kang East mangrove, slowly and carefully. Many hands make light work indeed and the small groups working hard amidst the vegetation also ensured we minimised our impact to the site.

We would not clear all of the trash that morning but the ICCS cleanup in September would take care of the rest. Meanwhile, it was good to realise see that the mangrove plant cover had improved considerably in LCK East mangrove.

I was really happy that I had NUS Toddycats with me – eleven of these experienced field biologists led small groups of volunteers deep into our plastic-ridden but precious LCK mangroves. Thanks to Amanda TanXu WeitingKenneth Pinto, Yang Yi YongFung Tze Kwan, Tan Chia WuTan Kai SceneAirani SAdriane LeeTeo Kah Ming & Theresa Su; also Joys Tan for handling pre-cleanup logistics. 

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It was a delight to see Sonneratia alba sprouting on the northern stream bank once again! We worked hard in this polluted stream to remove embedded plastic bags – the stream was still host to many crabs, fish, prawns, mudskippers and even horseshoe crabs, which still mate in the area.

Mangrover Theresa Su, the soothing sight of a capable field biologist amidst the mud!

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Organic pollutants from upstream was trickling down into the stream and raising an awful smell – this stinky organic effluent must be traced back to its source and eliminated. It pollutes the north-western mangroves in many spots, not just Lim Chu Kang East mangrove.

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Wheelbarrows are critically important in shifting half a ton of trash – we borrowed this from NUS CAPT, used the DBS pickup to bring to over to my RVRC office and rented a GoGoVan to transport it here in the morning – well worth all the effort! They will next be used at Tanah Merah during ICCS on 3rd September 2016.

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At the Weighing Station, volunteers weight and total up the weighed trash carefully! The weight does not reflect the number of items removed (e.g. a high amount of plastics is not heavy), but provides some indication at least of the amount of trash removed.

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A chain-gang of volunteers moved the accumulated half tonne of mangrove trash to the Trash Disposal Point, and thanks to the National Environment Agency’s Department of Public Cleanliness, their contractor will come at midday to help us with trash removal. All of such trash in Singapore ends up in an incineration point and its ash ultimately makes its way to the Pulau Semakau landfill the south.

What an amazing sight to behold once we were done, this is what a macro-trash free mangrove in Singapore would look like – may all our mangroves be as well-loved! #limchukang #mangrove #nationalday (Photo by Fung Tze Kwan)

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Always on hand, my first aid kits were thankfully needed just for one scratch today; sharing the comprehensive advise to participants before the cleanup, the pre-cleanup recce, the safety briefing with critical emphasis at the start, site captains and experienced independents amongst the volunteers, the slow and careful movement by everyone, the thick gloves issued to everyone, and the “gloves on always” rule – all of these help keep cleanups incident-free.

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Back at the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum at the National University of Singapore, a few of us NUS Toddycats see to the cleaning of the muddy gloves and wheelbarrows. These will be set aside to dry and then are packed away for the next cleanup! #reuse

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Always head into tough terrain with some help – I was really pleased with the 11 @nustoddycats who stepped up to be site captains when summoned that morning – they kept everyone safe in the tough terrain! Here, my former honours students are lined up chronologically – Maria, sister of Theresa Su (Hons 2009), Xu Weiting (Hons 2010), Fung Tze Kwan (Hons 2011) & Amanda Tan (Hons 2012).

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Hearty greetings for Singapore’ 51st National Day in the sun from the wonderful volunteers!

2016-08-06 10.43.17 pre-ND mangrove clean2p @ LCK East [AS]