Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities cleaned out an excessive amount of rubbish floating into creeks and canals caused by floods. The action was to mitigate the environmental impact on coastal areas in Sihanoukville.
Provincial spokesperson Kheang Phearum said on Tuesday that the measures came after flooding caused by heavy rains for more than a week. Authorities expressed hope that the rubbish would not flow into the sea and cause more environmental damage to coastal areas.
Rubbish and other waste had clogged the drainage, creeks and canals, resulting in floods after heavy rainfall. This has affected the residents’ livelihood, said Phearum.
“After the authorities restored the sewage systems and dug out soil to widen the rims of creeks and canals, the rubbish and waste flowed towards the sea. This has taken its toll on the environment, locals and tourists.
“It made seawater in some areas along the coastal line and the creeks smelly. In particular, plastic, bottle waste and many Styrofoam boxes had floated into the sea and littered the beach. As a result, locals and international tourists who bathed in the coastal areas suffered itching,” he said.
The Sihanoukville administration worked with the provincial departments of Environment; Water Resources and Meteorology, and Public Works and Transport to clear rubbish from creeks and canals near the Bridge LV, the O’Ach Moek Bridge and the wastewater treatment facility.
Sihanoukville governor Y Sokleng told The Post that heavy rain had inundated the province, especially Commune IV.
“We hope currents will flow rapidly after the cleanup initiative and avert flooding which has been affecting residential areas.
“The rubbish clogging the three locations has been removed from the creeks by our working group. The flood caused by heavy rains has almost receded completely so far,” he said.
Provincial governor Kuoch Chamroeun thought the cleanup initiative by the provincial authorities was very effective.
“For now, rubbish and other waste littering our coastal areas have been almost completely cleaned up. The rubbish was collected and disposed of at the dumpsite,
“We want to have a comfortable life. As families and a community, we need to jointly clean the environment, and especially participate to stop the disposal of rubbish and other waste at public places,” he said.
Sihanoukville’s Commune IV resident Som Sovantara said it was improper to deploy nets to intercept the rubbish and waste, but he agrees that the initiative helped stop environmental pollution in the coastal areas.