Spanish nature freed from almost two and a half tons of waste

by Lorraine Williamson
nature reserves waste

More than 6,500 volunteers collected more than 2.3 tons of waste from Spanish nature reserves on Sunday 11 December. Cleaning campaigns by SEO/Birdlife and Ecoembes are becoming increasingly popular in Spain, as evidenced by the growing number of volunteers participating. 

During these clean-ups, forests, fields and mountain areas in Spain were searched for litter. No less than 2.3 tons were collected on this Sunday thanks to the Libera project. Moreover, this project is committed to cleaning up nature reserves. This project is managed by the NGO and nature conservation organisation SEO/Birdlife in collaboration with the waste processing company Ecoembes. 

This waste was most often encountered by the volunteers in Spanish nature reserves 

More than 6,500 volunteers took part in this event, which was scheduled for the International Day of the Mountains. This was the sixth time volunteers within this project have removed waste from nature that was left behind by people. 

The thousands of volunteers spread over 398 important eco areas in Spain where they collected the waste from nature. As mentioned, a total of 2.3 tons of waste was collected. The volunteers mainly came across cigarette butts, small pieces of plastic, bags, sticks and candy wrappers during their cleaning campaign. 

Cleaning campaigns increasingly popular in Spain 

This sixth edition of the Libera project was also the last campaign of 2022. In March of this year, a cleaning campaign was organised within this project where rivers and beaches were cleaned of waste. Both actions have proven to be a success as a total of 13.1 tonnes of waste has been collected by more than 11,000 volunteers who have signed up. In total, 649 different eco areas in Spain have been searched for waste this year. 

The organisers of the Libera project therefore report that these actions are becoming increasingly popular among citizens. The participation of so many volunteers shows that people are increasingly aware of the magnitude of the problem of environmental pollution and that people can indeed influence this. 

SEO/Birdlife grateful for volunteers 

Miguel Muñoz, coordinator of the project at SEO/BirdLife, tells Spanish news site EfeVerde in a press release that “thanks to the efforts of thousands of volunteers, a solid platform has been built that is essential to raise awareness of the danger of leaving waste in nature. The fight against litter is without a doubt a powerful tool for defending our natural heritage.” 

Also read: Plogging is a popular way to stay healthy and protect the environment

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