Thursday, November 10, 2016

Mgingo and Kamilo Beach

Interesting places . . .


  • Located in Lake Victoria, the largest lake in Africa, is an island by the name of Migingo. It is half the size of a football field but is nonetheless home to 131 people who live in huts made of corrugated sheets and timber. 
  • Amazingly, it also has five bars, a beauty salon, a pharmacy, several hotels and numerous brothels. Most of island’s inhabitants are fishermen and fish traders. 
  • Settlement started in 1991.
  • There is an ownership dispute between Uganda and Kenya which remains unresolved. The island is inside Kenya’s borders but Uganda claims that it is within Uganda’s waters and that it is illegal for the island’s inhabitants to fish there. 

Weirdly, a much larger island called Usingo just 200 metres to the east of Migingo Island remains uninhabited. That's Migingo on the right, above.


Kamilo Beach:

A number of people I know have either just been to Hawaii or are booked to go there shortly.

Here is a Hawaiian item I happened to come across.
  • Kamilo Beach (literally, meaning twisting or swirling currents in Hawaiian), is a beach located on the southeast coast of the island of Hawaii. It is known for its accumulation of plastic marine debris from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
  • Native Hawaiians used to go there to collect large evergreen logs that drifted ashore, from which they made dugout canoes. It was also the place where people lost at sea might eventually come to shore.
  • The accumulated garbage that covers Kamilo Beach and an adjacent 4.5 km of shoreline today consists of 90% plastic. Although some of the items are household products, the vast majority by weight are fishing related such as nets, rope, cones used to trap hagfish, spacers used in oyster farming, buoys, crates, and baskets. Much of the debris is made from plastic pellets, either pre-production nurdles or pellets created from larger plastic items breaking down into smaller pieces.
  • Hawaii is situated in the path of the North Pacific Gyre, a large rotating ocean current that circles the Pacific between North America and Japan. The gyre's rotational pattern draws in trash from across the North Pacific Ocean, including coastal waters off North America and Japan, and traps it at the centre to form the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. 
  • Fishing debris, such as discarded fishing nets and lines, drowns, strangles, and traps birds and marine mammals. Some types of plastic and their constituents leach carcinogenic or poisonous chemicals when they break down. Others absorb toxins such as DDT and polychlorinated biphenyls from their surroundings. These toxins are absorbed by animals when consumed.
  • Multiple community-based cleanup efforts have taken place on Kamilo Beach in recent years. Prior to these efforts, the debris was 2.4 to 3.0 m high in some places. In 2003, the Hawaiʻi Wildlife Fund organized 100 volunteers and removed over 45 metric tonnes of fishing nets and other marine debris from the beach. They continue to host regular beach cleanup efforts in the region. In November 2007, Beach Environmental Awareness Campaign Hawaiʻi volunteers removed more than 4 million pieces of plastic from Kamilo Beach.

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