Muscat: The Environment Society of Oman (ESO) on Tuesday launched a nation-wide environment awareness campaign — Our environment, Our responsibility at Khasab in Musandam region. The activities during the eight-day-long campaign will include an environment picture gallery, a painting workshop for children, the cultivation of mangroves, maintenance of coral reefs, environmental competitions and a bicycle marathon in Musandam.
In Muscat, cycling and hiking events will be held during the week. Also, an environment theatre and exhibition will be held along with competitions for children on environmental subjects in Seeb suburb of Muscat.
The Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) students will join hands with ESO for beach cleaning and a campaign against cutting down ghaf trees in Seeb. The concluding day of the drive on January 8 will be observed as Oman Environment Day.
The ESO is joined by two local radio stations Merge 104.8 and Al Wisal. “The radio stations will broadcast tips on environment protection, facts and laws related to the environment. They will also air interviews with experts and use social media to maximise public interest in the cause,” Dana Sarhan, Public Relations Officer, Board Member at ESO, said at a press conference. In her address to the media she pointed out that there were 14 protected areas and 16 protected species in Oman. “There are many endangered species that only exist in Oman, which is something the public should be aware of. ESO is proud to engage with the public in a non-traditional manner. We want to join hands with different media organisations to spread the message across Oman,” she added. “Natural disasters around the world help us to understand the importance of our environment today and every day,” she pointed out. She hoped that the campaign would help ESO in raising awareness on how everyone can contribute to make Oman a better place.
“ESO is proud to be engaging with the public in a non-traditional manner and we look forward to joining hands with other media to mark Oman’s Environment Day,” Dana said.
“People must avoid littering regardless of whether fines are imposed or not, which is something that we aim to achieve through the awareness campaign,” said Nadim Attieh, station manager at Al Wisal and Merge.
“Established in January 1997 through a Royal Decree, the Omani Environment Day was created in order to align the Sultanate with best practice international efforts towards eco-preservation and resource protection,” Dana said. She saidthat observing Oman Environment Day was also a reflection of the Omani society’s belief in the cause.“Since its launch, the annual occasion has continually been met with public interest by both citizens and residents who come together to proactively support both governmental and non-profit organisations,” she added.