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Japanese plan world's largest cleanup

Tokyo Bay.
by Staff Writers
Tokyo (AFP) July 30, 2008
An environmental group in Japan said Wednesday it is planning to hold what it hopes will be the world's largest clean-up, bringing 180,000 volunteers together to pick up trash.

U-Project, a private group based in Chiba prefecture east of Tokyo, said they were calling on citizens to join in the clean-up around Tokyo Bay on November 24.

"We are expecting at least 10 percent of the population of nine cities and towns in the prefecture in which we are calling for cooperation, which is about 180,000 people," said Ai Ueda, a staff member of U-Project.

"Our group started picking up trash on Sundays with just about 20 people, but now there are about 400 people who join our regular clean-up rally on Sundays," she said.

"We want to expand our movement to the whole prefecture," she added.

Guinness World Records currently lists the largest clean-up as a gathering in August 2005 in which more than 140,000 people took part in the southern Japanese prefecture of Oita.

"It's not about competition. It's about sharing goodwill, and it's about enjoying a nice feeling coming not only from picking up trash but also from working together and saying hello to passers-by," she said.

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Air Quality Forecasts For China
Paris, France (ESA) Jul 29, 2008
With less than a month remaining before the Beijing Olympics, Chinese officials have introduced a series of measures to improve air quality for the Games. A new tool has been installed in the capital city to allow the Chinese to monitor the effectiveness of these efforts.

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