A Recap of World Cleanup Day 2023 in Tanzania

World Cleanup Day 2023 brought together thousands of dedicated participants across Tanzania, united by a shared commitment to environmental stewardship and responsible waste management. Nipe Fagio’s efforts were bolstered by the collaborative spirit of over 150+ organizations, including NGOs, businesses, and government entities, all working in unison to address the pressing issue of waste management. The collective goal was clear: to raise environmental awareness by cleaning up and auditing waste in 37 sites across Tanzania.

Leading up to World Cleanup Day, Nipe Fagio initiated pre-event activities at 11 sites, including 6 coastal and 5 community sites. These early efforts set the tone for the main event, engaging communities and emphasising the importance of a proactive approach to waste management. On World Cleanup Day itself, the campaign mobilized 22 sites for cleanup activities. Among these, 8 were located in Dar es Salaam at Kigamboni, Ilala, Kinondoni, Ubungo and Temeke. 14 were spread across other regions of the country. The diversity of locations highlighted the widespread commitment to environmental conservation.

Following the main event, Nipe Fagio organized post-event cleanups in 4 coastal areas, ensuring a comprehensive approach to waste management and leaving no stone unturned in their efforts to create a lasting impact. The success of World Cleanup Day 2023 was reflected in the numbers: 6,888+ dedicated individuals participated, collectively gathering 7,433 waste bags and a staggering 88,228.31 kg of waste. These figures underscore the magnitude of the challenge faced by Tanzania and the determination of its people to tackle it head-on.

With 10 years of data on waste, Nipe Fagio currently holds the largest database on waste in the country. Conducting Waste Assessment and Brand Audit (WABA) since 2018 during cleanup events, marine litter surveys, and household zero waste collection, Nipe Fagio consistently populates its 10-year database to support government decision-making and draw a connection between production and waste. Waste Assessments involve the process of collecting, sorting and identifying types of waste while Brand Audits involve counting and documenting the brands found on waste to identify the companies responsible for plastic pollution.

Through Waste Assessments conducted during World Cleanup Day in 2023, a total of 19,046 items were collected, Residual waste accounted for 52% of the waste while Recyclable waste accounted for 45%, and Hazardous waste for 4%. Among 56 types of waste collected, Plastic waste is a significant problem. From the analysis, plastic items take the lead, appearing in the top ten waste types collected.  Food wrappers (candy, ice cream, chips etc.) count for 19%, followed by Plastic Beverage Bottles 18%, Transparent Plastic Bags 16%, and Plastic Bottle caps 11%, while Polystyrene and foam pieces counted for 3% and car parts counted 0.01%.

A total of 98 polluters including local and foreign manufacturers and parent companies were identified. The top 5 leading in Tanzania were Bakhresa Group (35.6%) brands items, followed by MeTL Group with 23.6%, Watercom(T) Ltd (11.7%), U-Fresh Food Products Ltd (7.5%), and Hill Packaging Ltd with (5.2%). A few recognizable global brands include Coca-Cola, Namibia Breweries, Prance International Trade Co. Ltd, Imperial Tobacco, PepsiCo, Colgate-Palmolive, Unilever and Heineken B.V.

Nipe Fagio’s leadership and the collaborative efforts of numerous organizations have once again demonstrated the power of collective action in addressing environmental challenges. World Cleanup Day 2023 in Tanzania stands as a testament to what can be achieved when communities, NGOs, businesses, and governments come together.