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Members of the Negril Rotary Club clean up the coastline during last year's Coastal Clean-up Day.

JET anticipates record turnout for International Coastal Clean-up Day 2015

September 19, 2015 will be marked globally as the 30th annual International Coastal Clean-up Day (ICC). Started by the Ocean Conservancy in the USA in 1985, ICC is the largest one-day volunteer event in the world with more than 90 countries participating annually.

The annual event is coordinated locally by the Jamaica Environment Trust (JET) and is funded by the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) under the Clean Coasts Project (CCP). The theme for this year's event will be 'Nuh Dutty Up Jamaica', the public-education campaign component of the CCP.

Last year, Jamaica's ICC day was in the top 15 worldwide, ranking 12th out of 91 countries. This year, JET will again be partnering with several other government agencies and the private sector to beat last year's record to stage the biggest Jamaican ICC yet - more than 120 beach clean-up activities are planned to take place across Jamaica for ICC 2015.

"Registration is now open for groups who want to coordinate beach clean-ups in their parishes," said Suzanne Stanley, JET programme director. "We are planning more beach clean-ups than ever before for ICC in Jamaica this year, and we need a strong team of coordinators, sponsors, and partners working together to guarantee its success."

In 2014, 74 groups coordinated 113 beach clean-ups in Jamaica for ICC, including hotels, government agencies, schools, community and non-government organisations, service clubs, and ordinary citizens. In efforts to cement these partnerships, JET has reconvened an ICC planning committee which includes representatives from JET, the TEF, the National Environment and Planning Agency, the National Solid Waste Management Authority, recycling companies, tourism interests and private-sector partners. The planning committee will help to guide groups from across Jamaica as they coordinate beach clean-up exercises on September 19.

A cleaner and healthier Jamaica

"This year, we will be promoting the Nuh Dutty Up Jamaica campaign message through our ICC activities," said Diana McCaulay, JET CEO. "The aim of the Clean Coasts Project has always been to create synergies between JET's environmental education activities - like Nuh Dutty Up Jamaica and ICC - under one broad theme of better solid waste management for a cleaner and healthier Jamaica."

JET has been coordinating annual beach clean-up activities in Jamaica since 1994 and has acted as ICC national coordinators since 2008. This year marks the 22nd anniversary of JET's first clean-up of the Palisadoes strip. This year, the flagship JET Beach Clean-up will take place at the Fort Rocky Beach and its environs on the Palisadoes. A full list of clean-up venues will be published in the days leading up to the event.

For more information on how to get involved in International Coastal Clean-up Day activities, and to register to be a part of the event this year, log on to JET's website: www.jamentrust.org

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