The Clean-Up the World Day is a global environmental event that is commemorated every third weekend of September. It is a day that promotes community action as the key to long-term environmental change. The campaign welcomes involvement from all nations and participating organizations ranging from individual groups working independently within their local community, to national initiatives carried out by diverse groups. Local groups and organizations are supported to plan and conduct various activities to clean up, fix up and conserve the environment.
In addition to creating a platform for awareness creation on the need for a clean and healthy environment, Clean up the World weekend provides an opportunity for the whole World to come together in one weekend for a massive cleanup and fixing up of the environment. This rejuvenates public attention on global community concerns for the environment and how each individual can make a positive contribution to a cleaner and healthier world.
Clean up the World Day celebration seeks to:
- Bring together diverse stakeholders from every corner of the country in simple activities that will positively assist in fixing up and cleaning up their local environments.
- Raise awareness of the Government, Industries and Communities about local environmental issues, particularly waste minimization, recycling and waste management.
- Provide support to groups undertaking activities throughout the year including planting trees, cleaning parks and beaches, conserving water, running environmental awareness campaigns and educational forums on the importance of living in a Clean and Healthy Environment.
Relevance of Event
The Clean-up The World Day focuses on the need to enhance sanitation and high standards of hygiene to ensure a clean and healthy environment. It is worth noting, that a large number of diseases are as a result of poor hygiene and a polluted environment. By maintaining a clean and healthy environment, it is possible to reduce the health budget of the country thereby giving room for funding of other activities. These diseases include bacterial, viral and protozoan diseases such as, typhoid, cholera, amoeba, schistomiasis, dysentery, retrovirus especially in children under 5year.
This year Clean up the World will be celebrated when the world is undergoing a health crisis in the name of COVID 19. The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic is the defining global health crisis of our time and the greatest challenge the world has faced since World War Two. Since its emergence in Asia at the end of 2019, the virus has spread to every continent except Antarctica
More than a health crisis, the pandemic is also an unprecedented socio-economic crisis. It is also causing a huge environmental problem in the disposal of various protective materials being used to curb its spread.
The Authority will therefore take advantage of the clean up the World platform to create awareness on the best and most appropriate way of disposal for these materials. In addition to demonstrating safe ways of disposal, the Authority has developed guidelines to be used in the disposal of the materials and will therefore take this opportunity to create awareness on the guidelines as well as call on the public to follow the guidelines when disposing the protective materials.
In addition, the cleanup the world will also be promoting the newly rejuvenated keep Kenya clean campaign which was announced by the head of State on the 14th August while launching the Michuki memorial park. The program which will be implemented Country wide will be premiered in Nairobi County and will be overseen jointly by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry and that of interior through the Chiefs. The program which is to start on 1st September fits in with the ongoing kazi mtaani is in a bid to set a common goal of cleaning Kenya and rehabilitating and better management of the environment.
THE 2020 COMEMORATIONS
This year, the clean up the world event will be commemorated within the Nairobi river basin. This is in an effort to celebrate the work that has gone into rehabilitating the Nairobi river as well create awareness on the work yet to be done to clean up and keep the river clean for the future.
Nairobi City’s watershed and drainage system is comprised of the Nairobi River and its tributaries. The main Nairobi River (which is also known as Nyong’ara at its formative stages) originates from Ondri Swamp in Kikuyu area, Kiambu County. Immediately after its source the river is joined by other tributaries that primarily originate from springs within the Nairobi Metropolitan such as Kirichwa Kubwa, Kirichwa Ndogo, Mathare River and Ngong River among others. The river and its upper tributaries therefore flow through Nairobi City, with all the City’s run-off and storm water draining into the Nairobi River System.
The Nairobi River System has been affected quite adversely by activities and developments in the city, with its riparian area being encroached by structural and agricultural developments and the river itself receiving high loads of solid and liquid wastes. This has led to serious pollution of the river and its downstream waters of River Athi into which it empties. Furthermore the depletion of the riverine environment has affected the integrity and flow characteristics of the river this critical formative stage.
The Authority has concentrated its inspection and enforcement activities along the Nairobi River and its tributaries upstream of Michuki Park. During the Authorities’ inspections, all illegal dumpsites found along the riparian had the waste collected by the Nairobi Metropolitan Services. These were sources of pollution to Nairobi River as the dumped waste found its way into the river.
By commemorating the event along the river basin, the event will refocus attention on the importance of sustaining the good work of rehabilitation and restoration of the Nairobi River. The event will also bring together diverse stakeholders with a common interest to deliberate on new and better ways of advancing the restoration work. This will aid in charting a way forward that is sustainable and workable.