By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, September 20, 2022, 10:27: Gopalpur beach in Odisha’s Ganjam district is getting more polluted with each passing day according to a study.

Even as several steps have been taken to maintain cleanliness at the popular tourist destination, beach pollution is on the rise. As much as 101 kg of solid waste of nine different types were removed from a 10,869-sq-metre area on the beach during a recent cleaning drive.

The waste materials included non-biodegradable polythene covers, plastic caps, footwear, glass bottles and others, said Pratap Mohanty, professor of the Berhampur University’s Marine Science Department, which conducted the study.

Around 9.31 gm of solid waste materials were found per square-metre area on the beach, which is considered one of the cleanest beaches in the state. It is almost double when compared to the previous year’s 4.82 gm, he said.

“In 2018, it was 1.6 gm of solid waste/sq m and 3.6 gm/sq m in 2019,” said Mohanty, who has conducted the analysis of the pollution load on the beach for the past few years. “Beach pollution is increasing every year and it is a matter of concern,” he said.

The varsity’s department and the National Centre for Coastal Research observed the International Coastal Cleanup Day at Gopalpur on Saturday along with representatives from the Coast Guard, Gopalpur Port, and several other institutes, besides students and teachers. They emphasised awareness creation for tourists and local fisher folk, who contribute almost 97 and 3 per cent of the debris respectively, Mohanty added.

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