Environment ministry teams to help clean beaches, riverfronts

The ministry of environment, forest and climate change, has formed 19 teams to clean up beaches, river fronts and lakes across the country.  

Around 24 beaches in nine coastal states and river fronts in 24 identified polluted stretches in 19 states will be taken up for cleaning.  
Besides the listed rivers, a special cleanliness drives will be carried out at Yamuna riverfront in Delhi.  Certain lakes and water bodies have also been identified for cleaning. 
The waste collected from the beaches and river fronts will be safely disposed off to identified sites, in coordination with local municipal authorities. 
The 19 teams will include senior officers of the nevironment ministry, state nodal agencies in-charge of eco-clubs in schools, state pollution control boards, district administration, college of fisheries located along the coastal stretches and other educational /  research institutions.   
The teams will involve school children, college students and local communities in the cleaning exercise.  The ministry will be engaging eco-club schools, which are being provided assistance by the ministry under the National Green Corps programme. 
Rs10 lakh has been earmarked for each stretch of beach, river front and lakeside taken up for cleaning.  Cleaning up around important archaeological sites will also be taken up.   
The clean-up activities started from 15 May and will conclude on 5 June.  
State nodal agencies are the nodal points for implementing the programme of the environment ministry in every state.  
For cleaning the water bodies, the ministry has identified the stretches in consultation with the  State nodal agencies and institutional heads of college of fisheries, which are near the water bodies in each state.  
The cleaning programme will involve students from various schools and colleges and will also include members from NGOs, National Cadet Corps, Border Security Force, Central Industrial Security Force, Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Coast Guard and citizen groups. 
Environment minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has written to principals of schools across the country, requesting them to ensure their schools or institutions are free of plastic pollution by ensuring no plastic items such as plastic water bottles, plastic bags, plastic cups, plastic plates, plastic water jugs, plastic folders / trays / penstands are used in the schools.
He has lso sked them to help ensure that water bodies, ponds, wetlands, beaches or eco-sensitive area in or around schools / colleges remai n plastic free.
Cleanliness drives will be undertaken on prescribed holidays between April to May.
India is the global host of World Environment Day celebrations 2018, the largest UN-led celebrations on environment, with the theme Beat Plastic Pollution.