Vigilemos Manzanillo, AC

2020 April 2020 Around Mexico Living in Mexico Terry Sovil

By Terry Sovil on the April 2020 Edition

What? VIMAC is short for Vigilemos Manzanillo. This is a group in Manzanillo established to help keep the place free of gar-bage and protect our natural resources. The meaning of the word VIGILEMOS is “let’s watch over”. An overview below will help.

VIMAC Mission
Generate positive changes in regulation, policies, laws, decision-making processes in practices related to environmental issues and wildlife protection, promoting the full application of citizen participation rights, with access to information and transparency of public and private entities.

Impressum VIMAC
Created by a group of businessmen, academics and social activists who seek to influence and drive changes in behavior of society-at-large, with the aim of unifying efforts and achieving greater impact on actions that allow Manzanillo’s progress. [Impressum is a statement of ownership and authorship of con-tent that is required to be put on websites, newspapers, books, and magazines]

There isn’t a person reading this article that isn’t familiar with garbage. We find it everywhere. And, like in many places, it is an ongoing effort to keep it clean and picked up. I remember back in the 1950s when the United States corporations decided to launch a program called “KAB” (Keep America Beautiful).

Schools were prominent in getting children informed to stop their parents and elders from littering. Up until the 1950s, pack-aging was organic, so littering was a minor problem.

But, huge corporations rallied to fight against bad habits with individuals rather than having business own up to their creation of a horrible problem, which is plastic. Individual states started passing litter laws with fines, etc. while corporations used plastic for everything. There are also bottle tops, cigarette butts, bottles, aluminum cans and styrofoam plates and cups. Re-member, there is no “away” when you toss something. It goes some place.

One of our big grocers here in Manzanillo no longer gives out plastic bags to carry your purchase away. It is a good start but look at the shelves and what you are buying. Packed in plastic. Plastic everywhere. Cruise ships dump their garbage and the plastic floats away. It flows to the ocean via rivers. People toss their plastic everywhere. Plastic bags are the #1 predator in the ocean, but it doesn’t stop there.

• They kill over 100,000 marine animals each year, mainly sea turtles.
• Altogether 267 species of marine animals are affected.
• Thousands of birds swallow plastic or cigarette butts and die.
• 400 years to biodegrade! First used in 1957, consider those plastic bags have still NOT fully biodegraded!
• The chemicals used to make plastic bags enter the soil and our drinking water.
• Every man, woman and child on our planet uses more than 100 bags a year. That means we use over 3 trillion (3,000,000,000,000!) every year. Only 1% are recycled.

Not only does Vigilemos Manzanillo clean up but they also at-tend public meetings by the various government groups to of-fer opinions. Since they make NO political contributions, no one can accuse them of trying to buy politicians. They can help get the media to hold the government to their promises. They help educate the young with puppet shows! They get out and clean and have posted some nice fish-shaped holders for plastic trash around beach areas. They express love of the planet.

The photo says:
You do see the difference … they don’t
Do not litter the sea or the street the sea turtles get rid of jellyfish, they get confused with plastic bags and they drowned

Vigilemos Manzanillo does presentations. On “World Wetlands Day 2020”, they have chosen wetlands and the biodiversity they support. They want to draw attention to the importance of these ecosystems in supporting biodiversity. Wetlands are rich habitats. Forty percent of plant and animal species live and re-produce in wet areas. Over 100,000 species of freshwater fish have been recorded around the planet. Thirty percent of known fish species are from wetlands and every year 200 new species of freshwater fish are discovered.

Environmental education is an answer to the environmental crisis. This is what Vigilemos Manzanillo does!

There is a legend of a huge fire in the woods. All animals were fleeing. A jaguar saw a hummingbird fly over his head TO-WARDS the fire. Then he saw the hummingbird fly out and then back into the fire. The jaguar finally asked the humming-bird what he was doing. The hummingbird said “I go to the lake and drink water and then put it on the fire. The jaguar laughed and said that won’t work. The hummingbird replied by saying “I know but this forest is my home. It feeds me, gives me shelter and I help by pollinating flowers. I am a part of the forest. I have to do my part.” The forest spirits heard the hummingbird and they sent a heavy rainstorm that put the fire out. Indian grandmothers told this story to their grandchildren concluding “Do you want to attract miracles into your life? Do your part!”

The Vigilemos Manzanillo group can always use volunteers. Contact at on Facebook .

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