Though the coast of the Kozlu district of Zonguldak is swamped with garbage, some people sat down to enjoy a picnic in the middle of the environmental disaster, ignoring the medical and household waste that the sea had vomited back.
Those who flocked to the beach in Zonguldak over the weekend were met with piles of garbage in the Kozlu district.
Domestic and medical waste, which spread over an area of about 4 kilometers (2.5 miles), surprised the citizens. While some people returned, expressing anger at the authorities for not cleaning up the area, others chose to enjoy a picnic by lighting up their barbecue grills.
Ilker Kaplan, a resident, said he wanted to spend the weekend on the beach with his wife and child. "You can see the mess. Nature vomited the dirt that people threw into nature all winter," said Kaplan, underlining that they would be very happy if the beach will be cleaned.
"This place used to be a garbage dump. They probably threw the medical wastes of our hospital here. The sea vomited it back out," he added.
Binnaz Taşçı, who came to Zonguldak from Izmir to visit, said that she was very surprised to see one of the most beautiful beaches of the city surrounded by garbage.
Stating that she could not understand how people had picnics surrounded by the garbage, Taşçı said, "It is very bad for people to walk around in the dirt. It is a deplorable situation. It is really cruel to turn this beautiful nature into this, people are really cruel. I am in awe right now."
"I've seen a lot of syringes. There is plastic waste," she added.
Stating that the authorities should urgently take care of this pollution, Taşçı said, "This place needs to be cleaned as soon as possible. I don't understand how people eat and drink here. Are the people who live and come here used to it? Is it just like this? What can be done? It doesn't seem very difficult, actually. It would be very beautiful if all the trash is cleared away."
"Shame on us for destroying the beautiful nature, it's a sin," said Taşçı, adding that beauty is being wasted due to the trash.
The garbage comes from an area located by the sea in the Kozlu district which was being used as a landfill site for many years.
Its use as dumping grounds was terminated after the facility in Sapça became operational. However, the garbage in the huge area was dragged into the Black Sea to be swept away by high waves in the winter season. The waves dragged waste such as plastic, glass, bottles, syringes, serum, including medical waste, to the beach on the Kozlu coast. As a result, the beach was almost completely covered with garbage heaps.
Although the residents informed the local governments about the situation, no concrete work has begun yet for the cleaning of the waste.