More than 17,000 volunteers across Spain participate in campaign to clean the environment

Image of citizens cleaning the environment in Spain.

Image of citizens cleaning the environment in Spain. Credit: Twitter@ecoembes

As part of an initiative of SEO/BirdLife and Ecoembes to celebrate World Environment Day, more than 17,000 volunteers from all over Spain have participated in the ‘1m2 against garbage’ campaign.

As explained in a statement, this clean-up action is designed to bring the public’s attention to the abandonment of waste in natural spaces and raise awareness about this serious environmental problem.

Such littering also creates a potential risk of fires, contaminates the soil and water sources, and endangers the conservation of natural spaces and their biodiversity.

Today’s campaign was carried out in advance of World Environment Day, which is actually next Monday, June 5. For the seventh consecutive year, thousands of people attended one of the 970 designated collection points with the intention of helping to clean up the environment.

Organised by local entities, town halls and educational centres, the volunteers have removed rubbish from natural terrestrial, fluvial and marine environments throughout Spain.

Some of these places included locations of great ecological value such as the Sanabria Lake Natural Park and the Segundera and Porto mountains in Zamora, Alicante’s Sierra Helada and Faro, Lagunas de Ruidera in Albacete, Ciudad Real, and the Doñana Natural Area in Huelva, Sevilla and Cádiz.

In a tweet, Ecoembes wrote: “Thanks to the union of citizens, companies, entities and institutions in #ProyectoLIBERA , more and more of us care about and take care of our environment to continue enjoying it. We hope that this family of LIBERADORES will expand every year!”.

Asunción Ruiz, the executive director of SEO/BirdLife, thanked the society for its commitment to the conservation of nature which, once again, collaborated actively in this action.

“It is a great social movement because we need to change the production and consumption model to reduce our impact from the source”, she explained.

Ruiz continued: “We need to count on nature to guarantee a healthy, safe and resilient planet, that allows us to face the ecological crisis we are experiencing”.

Rosa Trigo, the CEO of Ecoembes, praised the fact that year after year, thousands of people demonstrate: “that the fight against rubbish is a great social movement of people who want to act in the immediate vicinity, find solutions, and have a positive impact on our environment”.

In Madrid, the former national soccer coach Vicente del Bosque led one of the cleaning brigades. He underlined the commitment of the world of sport, which he said also has: “a responsibility to the natural environment”.

“It is important to collect the waste but we also have to raise awareness that it cannot be left freely in the middle of nature”, he added.

In addition to collecting rubbish, many Spanish towns wanted to join the celebration of World Environment Day with educational activities, workshops, exhibitions, and educational initiatives.

The government of Navarra organised activities in the Señorío de Bértiz Natural Park that will continue throughout the weekend. The authorities there will subsequently provide information on the situation of the Bidasoa River and the obstacles it faces.

Santander City Council celebrated the event with a marquee in the town hall square. Under the motto ‘No contamination by plastics’, several environmental educators answered questions about the circular economy and held plastic craft recycling workshops.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at