World Cleanup Day Launches 2024 Campaign – “Make Room For Life!"

Written by
Jim Sharman
June 20, 2024

Let’s Do It World NGO (LDIW), Estonia-based organisers of the annual World Cleanup Day (WCD), has launched its official 2024 Campaign Countdown, under the slogan, “Make Room For Life!”

Today marks three months to go until the 7th annual WCD action, to be observed on 20 September. This year, WCD features for the first time on the United Nations Calendar of International Days & Weeks, thus further boosting the day’s significance and exposure, as more people become aware of LDIW’s overall mission.

WCD is a gateway for lasting societal change in attitudes towards waste in general. Tens of millions of volunteers, from almost every nation on Earth, are expected to get involved and raise awareness of the global mismanaged waste crisis. By cleaning up our local environments, our global network sends a clear message of collective determination to create a waste-free world.

Each year, humanity generates 2 billion tons of municipal solid waste. Without urgent action, global waste will increase by 70% at current levels by 2050[1]. Additionally, over 3.5 billion people lack access to efficient waste management systems, with much of their waste being incinerated, or ending up in nature, the seas, and the oceans, mainly through river systems[2]. reports that 60% of an annual 300 million tons of plastic waste end up in landfill or nature, with at least 8 million tons per year entering the oceans. Consequently, it is estimated that 40% of the planet’s oceanic surfaces are covered in plastic debris.

Anett Linno, LDIW CEO, describes her interpretation of this year’s campaign slogan: “‘Make Room For Life!’ is a global Call to Action, reminding us of the need to combat the rising tide of waste that is smothering us. Our natural resources face daily contamination from waste materials that pollute the environment, threatening to overwhelm all life.

By cleaning away this waste, and then changing behaviours around its creation in the first place, we literally “make room” for all living beings to enjoy green spaces and urban environments alike, and for life itself to grow and to flourish.

20 September therefore represents an opportunity for humanity to engage in cross-sector, cross-border, and cross-cultural activities that help everyone to rewrite their own story in relation to mismanaged waste, a crisis that affects all fauna and flora on Earth.”

LDIW targets 5% of each country’s population, the tipping point needed to ignite the required lasting societal change in behaviours and attitudes towards waste. WCD empowers individuals and communities to highlight to their respective governments and corporations the urgent need to identify and implement solutions to failing waste management systems the world over. 

From its HQ in Tallinn, Estonia, LDIW partners with many global organisations – private sector corporations, government ministries, environmental groups, other NGOs, etc. – in order to spread the message of hope and action – because cleanups are not the solution to the crisis.

Only lasting changes in behaviour towards overproduction, consumption patterns, legislation, etc. will solve this crisis. Partnerships are therefore a crucial element of ensuring coordinated cooperation. We remain immensely grateful to the ongoing support from our Global, Supporting, and Mobilising Partners, old and new, for their continued commitment to the World Cleanup Day campaigns each year.

The last WCD campaign, in September 2023, saw a record turnout of 198 countries and territories and an almost-record engagement of 19.1 M volunteers, pushing the annual average participation over the 15 M mark across all campaigns since 2018.

Significantly, 2023’s results saw the emergence of three notable increasing global trends; participation from young people and students, from local and national government ministers and officials, and the sheer volume of waste collected – 218,704 tons of it!

The increase in youth engagement was especially seen in countries such as France (50%), and Mozambique (67%), with World Cleanup Day’s founding nation, Estonia, reporting young people comprising 92% of their total participation in their new national participation record.

These trends offer encouragement that the vital message for necessary change is being received, with indications from many countries that educational programs are being added to school curricula, as well as other society-driven initiatives towards a circular economy.

Let’s Do It World NGO is an accredited member of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), and the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA). In July 2023, the UN Sustainable Development Goals Group acknowledged Let’s Do It World with its Mobilization award for organising World Cleanup Day.

In December 2023, The United Nations announced its unanimous ratification of the resolution to declare 20 September as World Cleanup Day on its official Calendar of International Days & Weeks.

On our website, you can register your event, or join existing events. If you have any questions, feel free to email us!

Join us, make room for life this 20 September, and help us create a healthy, waste-free world!

WCD 2024’s campaign kicks off today under the slogan, “Make Room For Life!” There are just 3 months left until 20 September, and this year sees us on the UN Calendar for the first time! Read more about the campaign and how cooperation and partnership are crucial to our success.
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