KOTA KINABALU: A beach cleaning project on an island off Sandakan resulted in some 3,500 plastic bottles being collected and made into a small house to send a green message.
Alexander Yee, managing director of the Trekkers Lodge, said the plastic bottles were picked up by the villagers over three years at Pulau Libaran, which is about 45 minutes away by boat from Sandakan.
“We used one-litre plastic bottles for the walls and fence of this 300sq-ft house, while zinc and other materials were used for the roof and remaining parts,” he said.
The house was constructed in about five weeks and will be used as a gallery to educate visitors on beach cleaning and turtle conservation.
Yee said it all started when the Sabah Wildlife Department asked if they could help solve a problem for a villager, who complained that the eggs laid by turtles on his land were taken away by other villagers.
As Friends of Sea Turtles Research and Education president, Yee committed to introduce a turtle conservation project on the island.
While at it, he realised the amount of rubbish washed ashore and devised a community beach cleaning project.
Fundraisers were held and villagers who participated in the daily beach cleaning were rewarded with money.
“We are finalising the content of the gallery and hope to open it to the public this August,” he said.