Environmental Education and Vocational Training
AKTI promotes and supports the construction of a knowledge based society with active mobilised citizens. It collaborates with schools, Universities and local authorities in various initiatives including environmental education and awareness raising activities focusing on specific issues that are of particular relevance and interest to the Cyprus society such as water saving, recycling, biodiversity, etc. AKTI is frequently invited by schools to give presentations and on-site trainings on issues such as coastal and waste management. It is also active in designing professional and vocational training programs as well as on-the-job environmental vocational trainings. It promotes green jobs through dedicated vocational training programs (e.g. organic farming, composting) and provides support to trainees and training of trainers.
The program is based on the creation of transnational networks between Spain, Cyprus, Portugal and Italy aiming to strengthen activities between four schools and four civil society organisations (CSO). Members of this transnational network will be involved in activities related to marine sciences and community participation.
These activities include:
- Exchange of students between the four countries
- Creation of educational material related to marine litter problem
- Development and implementation of innovative educational actions
- Digital applications
- Prototype forms of interaction
- Transfer of good practices
- Possible interventions, improvements and modernize on the existing institutional framework
All activities aim to promote interaction between students, teachers and CSOs, sharing experiences and good practices in all project sites. This can positively affect local communities and help in understanding the common problem of marine litter that needs to be addressed.
Η ΑΚΤΗ Κέντρο Μελετών και Έρευνας, πραγματοποίησε και φέτος το καλοκαίρι (Ιούνιος-Αυγουστος 2018) την καθιερωμένη εκστρατεία καθαρισμών ακτής, με 13 καθαρισμούς σε όλες τις ακτές της ελεύθερης Κύπρου, σε συνεργασία με τις Τοπικές Αρχές. Οι συγκεκριμένοι καθαρισμοί είναι στοχευμένοι: διεξάγονται σε ακτές τουριστικές ή/και που έχουν Γαλάζια Σημαία και στόχο έχουν να αναδείξουν το πρόβλημα με τα μικρά σκουπίδια που κρύβονται στην άμμο, αφού οι παραλίες καθαριστούν από την οικεία Τοπική Αρχή. Σημαντική είναι και η συμβολή ομάδων εθελοντών!
Η καλοκαιρινή εκστρατεία 2018, διεξήχθη στο πλαίσιο του έργου «Zero Waste Beaches» που υλοποιείται από την ΑΚΤΗ / AKTI Project and Research Centre με την υποστήριξη του Ιδρύματος της Coca-Cola .
Οι καθαρισμοί γίνονται κάθε χρόνο στις ίδιες ακτές, με συγκεκριμένη μέθοδο, έτσι ώστε τα στοιχεία που συλλέγονται να μπορούν να είναι συγκρίσιμα, και να οδηγούν σε συμπεράσματα που βοηθούν την παγκόσμια έρευνα. Για την καταγραφή των απορριμμάτων και το διαχωρισμό στις πηγές χρησιμοποιείται το Διεθνές Πρωτόκολλο Ocean Conservancy. Τα δεδομένα εισάγονται στην διεθνή βάση δεδομένων του Διεθνούς Οργανισμού Ocean Conservancy, ώστε να αποτελέσουν υλικό για σύγκριση δεδομένων και μελλοντική έρευνα.
Στην εκστρατεία καθαρισμού «καλοκαίρι 2018» έλαβαν μέρος 500 εθελοντές. Μαζεύτηκαν 15.886 τεμάχια σκουπιδιών, συνολικού βάρους 1116Kg, στις πιο κάτω κατηγορίες:
Project “Fighting plastic pollution in Cyprus: The Responsible Beach Bars Initiative” has been recognised as an innovative social initiative and therefore awarded by Beyond Plastic Med organisation (http://www.beyondplasticmed.org/).
This initiative aims to engage beach bars, snack shacks and beach restaurants (henceforth called beach bars), strewn around Cypriot beaches, to take ownership of ‘their’ stretch of beach in order to protect it and minimise the amount of marine litter, and especially plastic, left on it by their customers and in general beach goers.
The Initiative was launched on 28 June 2017 in Paphos, in the presence of His Excellency the Spanish Ambassador in Cyprus, Mr Angel Lossada, and the Mayor of Yeroskipou. The launch event included a beach cleanup with the participation of students from Paphos Technical School and other volunteers, as well as informational campaign to the beach bars of the area.
The highlights from the Launch Event are presented in this short video:
Project “Fighting plastic pollution in Cyprus: The Responsible Beach Bars Initiative” will achieve its aims through six interrelated activities, which are presented below.
(1) Organisation and implementation of a workshop bringing together stakeholders from around the island to record their opinions and views with regards to plastic waste, to identify the problems they face with regards to its management and to pinpoint easy to implement and effective solutions for its management.
Three workshops were organised within the framework of the project: one with the local authorities responsible for Blue Flag beaches in Cyprus, one in Paphos with key stakeholders and one in Nicosia with the collaboration of the Spanish, Italian and Portuguese embassies on the island.
(2) Development of a concise but comprehensive guide for beach bars outlining the practices that they can implement to minimise plastic waste;
(3) Awareness-raising campaign in the summer of 2017 targeting all beach bars on the island, where the Guide and a Decalogue of Good Practice will be disseminated.
The awareness-raising campaign involved visiting beach bars around the island, sharing information about marine litter and encouraging them to become members of the Responsible Beach Bars Network, by adhering to the Decalogue of Good Practice (Decalogo EN_F Decalogo GR_F).
(4) Launch a competition for sustainable practices implemented by beach bars around Cyprus.
The competition was launched in March 2018, in collaboration with the Pancyprian Association of Entertainment Venue Owners (PASIKA). The deadline for the competition was the 31 March 2018.
All the competition documents can be found here (in Greek):
(5) Organise an awards ceremony for the winning beach bars.
The Awards Ceremony, which took place on 24 April 2018 on board the vessel M/V DOREMI, was a great success. In addition to the awarded beach bars, attendees included the Mayor of Larnaca, Mr Andreas Vyras, His Excellency the Ambassador of Spain, Mr Angel Lossada, Her Excellency the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Ms Nathalie Jaarsma, representatives from the British High Commission and other distinguished guests, including representatives of the Cyprus Association of Recreation Venue Owners.
There was extensive coverage of the ceremony in local media (both online and print), including CYBC’s morning news broadcast (click here to view the broadcast clip).
AKTI developed the following highlights video of the award ceremony:
Beat the Microbead: A worldwide campaign to ban plastic microbeads
Beat the Microbead is an international campaign supported by AKTI Project and Research Centre along with numerous NGOs worldwide against microbeads used in cosmetics.
Microbeads and Pollution
Microbeads are tiny particles of plastic that have been added to possibly thousands of personal care products sold around the world. These microbeads, hardly visible to the naked eye, flow straight from the bathroom drain into the sewer system. Wastewater treatment plants are not designed to filter out microbeads and that is the main reason why ultimately, they contribute to the Plastic Soup swirling around the world’s oceans. Sea creatures absorb or eat microbeads. These microbeads are passed along the marine food chain. Since humans are ultimately at the top of this food chain, it is likely that we are also absorbing microbeads from the food we eat. Microbeads are not biodegradable and once they enter the marine environment, they are impossible to remove.
About the campaign
The campaign aims to prevent manufacturers and retailers from using and selling products containing microbeads, and asks governments to ban their use in cosmetics. It was launched in 2012 and it is currently supported by 86 NGOs from 37 countries and 446 brands from 117 different manufacturers. This positive response shows that more and more of these microbeads are being removed from personal care products and replaced by natural alternatives. It is still a far cry to say that all personal care products are free from plastic microbeads though.
In October 2013, an internationally functional, smartphone application and supporting online platform (www.beatthemicrobead.org) were launched to support the campaign. The Beat the Microbead app makes it easy to check whether a product contains plastic.
For more information, click here.
MarLitCy is a 28 month long project, funded by EuropeAid Programme.
The EU funded project ‘INTERACT’, focuses on social inclusion through environmental activities.
Turning a harmful waste, such as cooking oil, into biodiesel while promoting development and civic action
ARGONAFTIS is a 5 month in service training for young scientists in the field of environment!
An urban intervention to encourage the public to learn about, and to actively participate, in Tiganokinisi.
The EU funded project Coast Alert: Acting Regionally in a European Context.
Raise awareness among the youth of Cyprus to work for the protection of the global climate, ‘Youth in Action’ Prog.
An island-wide initiative as a confidence-building measure under the auspices of the Environment Technical Committee.
Share and shape common European values on consumption lifestyles with a view to contribute to sustainable environmental development.
Training Mediterranean Local Authorities And Civil Organizations On Integrated Coastal Zone Management And Reaction To The Impacts Of Climate Changes
Discovering the “know- how” on Sub-actions 1.1, 1.2, & 1.3 is a Gantalcalá initiative, ‘Youth in Action’ Programme.
Stimulate awareness among the youth of Cyprus on the importance of coastal environment, ‘Youth in Action’ Programme
Cooperation for the conservation of rare endemic plants of Cyprus within the buffer zone
Survey conducted on the perceptions on sustainable development and climate change in Cyprus
Increase awareness on environmental issues and trigger environmental-friendly behavior.
Cooperation on solid waste management, including recycling through a mobile information centre
Promote effective partnership among CSOs in Cyprus and the Mediterranean, EU and other countries, on environmental issues, sustainable development and stakeholder participation processes.
Increase young people’s awareness and society in general on the environmental impact of transportation.
Develop AKTI’s human capacity and organisational structure to make the organization more a more effective CSO.
Water saving: An integrated environmental education program for schools in South-East Europe
“Stay Healthy, Stop Mercury” campaign which is aiming at raising awareness of a potential “child brain drain” as a result of environmental mercury pollution
World Environment Day Green Cities – Plan for the Planet!
A summer camp for the youth of Cyprus to learn, discuss and act upon a sustainable future for their island.
A bi-communal workshop on mycorrhizal technology in Cyprus
Screening of school textbooks to identify historical myths that may encourage conflict across the communities in Cyprus while initiating dialogue among educators.
Providing information to farmers and supporting the efforts for the promotion of organic agriculture in Cyprus
Creating an inventory of the major sources of biodegradable waste in urban and rural areas of Cyprus
Promoting awareness-raising on organic agriculture among farmers across communities in Cyprus.
Utilizing ENVISwith a wide range of GIS applications allowing the experts and their departments across communities to produce a set of maps for the entire island of Cyprus.
Creating the website for the most natural coasts in Cyprus
The Young Green- Consumer, the Citizen of Tomorrow
Raising awareness of cyclists and excursionists regarding the conservation and protection of the environment.
Water experts from both sides of the island cooperating through the use of a shared water database system called ENVIS (Environmental Information System).