Hashtags and viral challenges usually represent funny or iconic moments in pop culture, but there is a new viral movement that has taken off whose goal isn’t to entertain – but to help save the planet.
1.3 billion tonnes of household waste is generated per year and only 258 -368 million tons of it ends up in the 50 largest dumpsites, and million tons of it ends up in the ocean, 80% of which comes from mainland waste. Well, the new hashtag #trashtag wants everyone to chip in to chip away at this trash problem. People are challenged to take a before photo of an area that is in need of intense trash clean-up, followed by an after photo of the beautified area.
The hashtag blew up on social media after a reddit user posted a screenshot of someone who had completed the challenge, with the caption: “Here is a new #challenge for all you bored teens. Take a photo of an area that needs some cleaning or maintenance then take a photo after you have done something about it, and post it here.” Scroll down below to see some of the best photos from this environmentally-friendly hashtag and don’t forget to upvote your favs!
#1. Here’s my contribution to #trashtag. My (large) family and I cleaned up this beach we campe near over the summer
Even when waste is put into dump sites it finds other ways of getting out into the world. As trash decomposes it can release toxins and harmful chemicals that leak into the soil, which then spreads into the water and air. While this can seem life a slow process that might not directly affect you, improper waste management can have deadly consequences in real time. In 1998 and 1999 thousands of people were killed in Bangladesh by flood waters caused by piled up waste in the sewers.
#2. #trashtag seems to be trending. This one’s from Nepal
#3. #trashtag Manila Bay has been considered one of the dirtiest bays across the world. After 11 years, the Supreme Court finally issued a cleanup order which thousands of volunteers joined last January 27, 2019.
Worldwide, each individual person generates an average of 0.74 kilograms of waste per day, but ranges widely, from 0.11 to 4.54 kilograms. High-income countries generate about 34 percent, or 683 million tonnes, of the world’s waste, even though they only account for 16 percent of the world’s population.
#4. This should be the new challenge to make the world a better place
#5. Around 500 volunteers helped with the cleanup of 5 million kg of trash from this Mumbai beach.
Americans love to supersize everything and that includes waste. Even though Americans make up roughly 5% of the world’s population, they generate close to 40% of the world’s total waste.
#6. Just one of the many days cleaning up our local water ways. Featuring Selma Kayak and Large Marge the Garbage Barge
#7. 3 women cleaned up this area together.
While every tip of the planet seems to be filled with waste, the only place where you can almost escape the endless litter is Antartica. It is protected by the Antarctic Treaty, a treaty that prohibits military activity, mineral mining, nuclear explosions and nuclear waste disposal.
#8. Took me a few days, but finally finished!!
#9. Students from @tetsocollege, Dimapur, accepted the #Trashtag challenge
Landfills are the designated place where trash belongs and with so much waste being thrown in them things get densely packed in. For trash degradation it goes through an anaerobic process (without air), which creates huge amounts of methane gas – a greenhouse gas with an environmental impact 25x greater than carbon dioxide.
#10. This is just a work of an hour! #trashtag
You might not think of plastic packaging and food to be equals, but food does fall under the waste category. Roughly one-third of food produced in the world for human consumption every year (approximately 1.3 billion tons) is wasted. Each American throws out around 1,2000 pounds of organic garbage that could be composted.
#12. #trashtag from Vietnam, youngsters gather voluntarily to clean up the environment and to raise public awareness
#13. My aunt is a 70 year old retired school teacher and she has been making these signs and going around cleaning up our neighborhood in the Bronx for a few months now #Trashtag
Annually, more than 14 billion pounds of garbage is dumped into the world’s ocean (mainly marine life toxic plastic).This has contributed to what is called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch or Pacific trash vortex, a cluster of marine debris in the Pacific Ocean that is twice the size of the U.S.
#14. The community in my home town in Mexico got together and cleaned up garbage
#15. Took the whole Sunday morning for 10 people. But finally completed the #trashtag challenge
Ever think about what happened to that outdated flip phone of yours? It probably ended up in a landfill along with the over 140 million cell phones thrown into landfills by Americans yearly. Every year, over 50 million tons of electronic waste like cell phones, computers, TVs, etc is created.
#16. Along the Potomac River south of Washington, DC. We have to clean up the existing mess, but bottle deposit laws and styrofoam bans would prevent most of it. Contact your local, state, and federal representatives and insist on this.
#17. These people went above and beyond #trashtag
#18. People are starting to accept the challenge
#19. We did our first “official” beach clean-up in Belize that past December. Before this I’d say we were classified as “beach(trash)combers”, picking up the odd straw and plastic bottle we saw on our walks. However, for Belize, we travelled there with the intention of dedicating time to picking up any trash we came across on our hikes and beach walks. We even created a social media “clean-up crew” by partnering with other travellers to do a clean-up with us at the same time.
#20. There’s an organisation I volunteer at and we basically do cleanups like this in the city. Places that have been forgotten by the local government and make them accessible for the public
#21. We’ve picked up tons from Durban beaches over the years
#22. Love seeing this become a challenge! Keeping the beaches clean here in Florida
#23. 40 Norwegian Folk High School students from Alta spent one week picking trash at a local beach, gathering a total of 12,400kg
#26. Another #trashtag challenge accepted! Help keep our streets clean
#27. My girlfriend and I doing our part for #trashtag at the beach the other day
#28. Cleaning up floating debris in Jamaica Bay, NY
#29. Decided to pick up trash for my birthday and filled up 4 bags
#30. Did our part today for #trashtag while offroading in the mountains of California