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 ECO

Kids’ anthem message for cleaner, greener world

6th March, 2019

By MOHD IZHAM B. HASHIM

KOTA KINABALU: A clarion call to protect the environment from litter threat has been launched by 150 young vocal eco-warriors.

With the planet – and Sabah’s own natural beauty – threatened by a rising tide of indiscriminately thrown litter, plastics and assorted rubbish, the Kinabalu International School (KIS) young choristers’ anthem message on Monday to the new younger generation was clear.

The KIS assembly hall resounded with the heart- warming rendition by the primary school choir of ‘Kamilah Anak-Anak Indah’ – in Bahasa Malay and English – as part of a ‘Our Future, We Care’ video campaign to promote environmental awareness and education.

Campaign organiser Steven Salter hoped the call for a halt to the pollution of our beaches, seas and rivers would strike a chord with a younger generation keen to spread the message to a wider society about protecting the environment.

As Steven told the New Sabah Times: “Change begins with the younger generation. Engaging children to promote environmental awareness is a vital step to instil a proactive ecological attitude and put an end to the harmful habit of littering”.

And so, he decided to inspire change by creating this song which carried an important and powerful message which would be delivered by the younger generation to save the planet and put a stop to indiscriminate littering.

To support the campaign for environmental awareness, Steven expressed the hope that more sponsors would come forward. At present, the sole sponsor for the initiative was the owner of the Pan Borneo Hotel.

“Indiscriminate garbage disposal was posing a mortal danger to wildlife. And in Sabah no less than anywhere else on earth.

“It is utterly shameful that the harmful habit of littering is still plaguing Sabah’s beautiful natural assets, and threatening ecosystems and marine life,” Steven said, stressing the need to reduce the use of plastics which later became a litter threat to the environment.

Plastics were the most common type of litter found strewn along beaches and in the world’s oceans, said Steven. And they caused the most harm because they were non-biodegradable and got fragmented into smaller pieces of microplastics which are consumed by marine life.

And Steven pointed out that as microplastics could wreck havoc in the ecosystems and the food chain, they could also pose a major health risk to humans.

Steven, who witnessed the performance by KIS pupils with his wife DeeDee Salter and other campaign committee members, underlined the need to break the habit of littering, starting with young people.

“And when young people learn more and speak up about the dangers of littering, they’ll start a new culture that is positive, one that reduces the use of plastic bags and straws as well as adopts proactive anti-litter habits,” he added.

This way, harmful plastics and other rubbish could be stopped from polluting our seas and rivers and destroying Sabah’s blessed natural environment.

Going forward, Steven hoped the campaign would inspire young people throughout the country – and particularly in Sabah to come together to make a difference, by instilling environmental awareness and promoting love for the planet.

“We wish to drive this eco-message to include as many young people as we can, and hopefully on Earth Day, the campaign can be further widened to other schools – so young people can join together to sing the song and learn the importance of keeping the environment clean and building a cleaner and greener world,” said Steven.

Among those who attended the programme include Co-organising chairwoman, Monica Chin.

   
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