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ASAA Clean-up at Utulei Beach appreciated by beachgoers

The ongoing effort of the American Samoa Aquatics Agency (ASAA) to clean up Utulei Beach as part of the Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources (DMWR) plan of removing large debris from the water surrounding the island, (after it has conducted its survey in locating the large debris), has not gone unnoticed by the public.

Last Saturday, families that were at the Utulei Beach with their children, noticed what the ASAA pulled out of the water about 75 yards out and commented to Samoa News that they were glad that someone is trying to clean things up at the beach for the safety of everyone.

“I am glad this group is doing what they are doing. When I was here last month, one of my children stepped on a soda can and cut their foot. This is one of the most popular places on island to swim and have picnics. I am glad that someone is stepping up to take the initiative to do what is right,” said a father of two last Saturday.

Last Saturday, the ASAA was able to pull out close to 235 pounds of stuff that did not belong in the water such as soda cans, beer bottles, tires, plastic trash cans, plastic bottles, potato chip bags and other small items.

Head of the ASAA Zero Iaulualo said that he has located two unknown metal containers stuck under the sand with only the corners sticking out. He has not yet tried to remove them for safety reasons and will not try, until he finds out exactly what they are.

“This is who we are. This is part of what we do. But the public can help out by not throwing their trash in the water,” said Iaulualo.

One of the programs planned by the DMWR after their documentation of the large debris and the start of its removal, is to conduct “outreaches” where they will be giving out information to the public— informing everyone on how to recycle the trash they have picked up, with other information about plastic bags, illegal dumping and waste from streams as well as other useful and general information.

DMWR plans to get villages involved to help with removal of smaller debris from places such as stream mouths and beaches.