The sight of plastic and other trash seen floating on the water at the corniche near Corniche Street and Port Khalid in Sharjah is truly an eyesore. This area, stretching towards a popular hotel, used to be a ship yard where many dhows used to be anchored. But, it has now been converted to a nice corniche for recreational purposes, all thanks to the beautification efforts by the authorities in Sharjah.
The surrounding areas are also going through tremendous improvements, but the actions of people are hazardous both to the environment and the image of the city. I would request the concerned authorities to step up the efforts to stop such maligning of the environment.
I read a report in Gulf News about Sharjah’s bid to be entered on the list of World Heritage Sites by Unesco (“Sharjah updates its Unesco World Heritage Site file”, Gulf News, November 29). The report stated that Sharjah’s higher authorities are making tremendous efforts to ensure that the city gets an esteemed ranking in the Unesco list, and I see the renovation and restoration work on museums and throughout Al Marijah Area to make it viable for tourists and families. The only hurdle in its way would be the unkempt environment.
I always see tourists in huge numbers walking down towards the ‘Heart of Sharjah’ and see how bad they feel when they see the residents dumping waste such as plastic bottles, wooden pieces, unfinished food and food wrappers in the water. There is security deployed in this area, but there are only two officers present, which is insufficient to monitor the reckless actions of the visitors. There is a display board that clearly warns the visitors not to dump waste in the water, but it is openly flouted. People go to the corniche for clean, fresh air and exercise, but the stench of the pollutants in the water is toxic to the atmosphere.
Some of the change initiatives that I could recommend to the relevant authorities in order to make this waterfront a wonderful tourist attraction is to monitor the people responsible for throwing waste in the water and issuing fines or making them clean the mess to set as an example for such misconduct.
I thank the Department of Heritage and other organisations for taking the initiative to make Sharjah rich with its heritage value.
The reader is a consultant based in Sharjah.
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