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Please keep our beaches free from plastic waste

I want to share with you my first trip for 2017. I took this picture at a place in Bali called Nyang Nyang beach. It was surreal. To be honest, I couldn’t believe I survived the steep hike to get here. I almost turned back. But I couldn’t resist the sounds of the waves calling me. There wasn’t so much to do here and only 3 other people were around, but it was beautiful.

I watched 8 foot waves break, walked soft white sands, and laid down under the sun. As I walked along the shore, I found a lot more things other than footprints. Along with fallen tree branches and crushed sea shells were plastic water bottles, wrappers, slippers, and even a lighter. It was mind-blowing. Every step and every meter, the amount of trash seemed to increase and accumulate.

Can you count how many plastic bottles are in this photo?
Half-empty juice
Other things found at the beach
The seashell and plastic box

These things were probably washed up ashore but some of it, like the half-full bottle of iced tea, were most certainly left there by fellow travelers. Look, I know that buying bottled water or juice is inevitable especially when traveling in a foreign country. This is mostly for health and hygiene’s sake, but my plea to you is this: for every bottle you buy, reuse it at least once or dispose of it properly. Don’t just leave it anywhere, especially not in the beaches, because it always ends up in the ocean.

Better yet, bring your own reusable water bottle.


For me, the ocean is a playground. For others, the ocean is their livelihood. And for all of us, it means food. You would not want to cook tilapia and bangus and find out it’s stuffed with plastic, right? This is the reality right now. You’ve probably already seen videos floating around on Facebook showing whales and sharks who died because they ingested too much plastic, or read articles like this one published by The Guardian.

The fishies don’t want to eat plastic either but they are not as smart as us. They don’t recognize it’s not fishy food although it looks like it. We, humans, know that plastic wastes do not belong in the oceans. We are smart – and we have to stop throwing our shit everywhere and anywhere. This all boils down to the way we consume and buy products that turn into waste.

Consuming less is definitely a lifestyle change that I’m still learning to do. You should try it too. I love traveling and one of the most consistent problems I’ve seen in places I’ve been to was the mindless use and disposal of plastic and other waste.

It’s 2017 and it’s time to move towards a greener life and to find alternatives without compromising the things we love the most.

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