Volunteers' cleanup effort restores beach on Taiwan's Penghu to original beauty

The nearly 2 km crescent of gold sand was inundated by garbage before the cleanup

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After being cleaned up, Longmen Back Bay Beach is once again a beautiful crescent of gold sand. (Penghu County Government photo)

After being cleaned up, Longmen Back Bay Beach is once again a beautiful crescent of gold sand. (Penghu County Government photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Longmen Back Bay Beach (龍門後灣海灘) on Taiwan’s outlying Penghu Islands has been restored to its original beauty after community volunteers took turns cleaning it up, Central News Agency (CNA) reported on Monday (June 10).

The nearly 2 km crescent of gold sand had been inundated by garbage.

Longmen village chief Hong Rui-da (洪瑞達) said that after a lull in the northeast seasonal winds of March, more than 40 volunteers in the Longmen community (龍門社區) were mobilized to clean up garbage on the beach, according to the news outlet. He said many volunteers were taken aback by how much marine litter had accumulated on the beach.

The volunteers spent more than two months picking up all the debris from one side of the beach to the other. The trash included discarded fishing nets, driftwood, styrofoam, and more than six tons of PET bottles, Hong said.

Penghu County Magistrate Lai Feng-wei (賴峰偉) said the beauty of Penghu lies in its beaches. As flotsam and jetsam is unavoidable, beach cleanup efforts are indispensable. Clean beaches and water will keep bringing tourists to the archipelago, he said.

Penghu County is surrounded by the sea and consists of 90 islets, of which 19 are inhabited. With a total shoreline of 450 km, a majority of the 96 villages and boroughs in the county have seafronts. Therefore, the issue of marine debris is closely interrelated with the lives of the island habitants.

For that reason, the county government will organize a county-wide coastal cleanup activity on June 22 and mobilize 5,000 county residents to restore the islands to their former cleanliness and charm, according to CNA.

Community volunteers take turns cleaning up garbage on the beach. (Penghu County Government photo)

Volunteers restore the beach to its original beauty.

(Penghu County Government photo)