Plastic waste in the pristine beaches of Watamu have reduced drastically this year following programs laid out by stakeholders to clean up the area and recycle the products.

This emerged during the International beach cleanup which brought together over 500 people including students from 15 schools, 10 tourist resorts, environmental organizations and local community based organizations who joined the world in the exercise to ensure the beach is free from plastics.

Authorities said last year they collected three tons of plastic wastes and other debris which are a threat to marine life but this time they collected less than two tones.

Dadley Tsinganyiu the warden Watamu marine national park said their aim is to ensure the beaches are free from plastic wastes by ensuring all debris collected is recycled.

Speaking during the Watamu beach cleaning exercise to mark the international beach cleaning day Tsinganyiu said during the cleaning exercise participants came across a small dead fish which had swallowed plastic waste.

Normally he said plastic wastes are consumed by fish because they cannot differentiate them from their food.

“Plastics blocks intestines , the most affected are sea turtles, key sperm whales  , birds , and fish,’’ he said.

The cleanup organized by Watamu marine Association not only brought hotels and schools but attracted beach operators, boat operators, safari sellers among others.

The Warden said in July they launched a weekly cleaning programme that ensures all plastic wastes are collected and transported to the Watamu eco world recycling centre a move that has helped reduce the wastes.

Further he said plastic ban has really helped reduce the number of wastes in the beaches though there are still evidence of plastic bottles.

Nixon Charo Fondo the Chairman of Watamu Community Association (WACA) who also led team members in the cleanup exercise said the event was important in keeping the beach clean and free from plastic wastes and other debris.

He said a clean beach attracts tourism in the area which relies heavily in the hospitality industry,

“Watamu beaches are turtle breading grounds plastics are a major threats, once the beaches are clean tourists will come in large numbers.

Among the hotels that took part in the exercise include Temple point resort,.Garoda beach resort, Kobe, Turtle Bay, Medina Palms, Hemingways, Ocean Sports, Acquarius, , Lyly palm among others.