Volunteer for Coastal CleanUp Day

coastal clean up day 2012

coastal clean up day 2012

Like a lot of travelers, I love animals and want to work to conserve our environment and beaches as much as possible. Whenever we can, Bob and I like to visit and spend our money on organizations that help foster, rehabilitate and improve the lives of injured and endangered animals, like our trip to the turtle sanctuary in Cancun or the kangaroo rescue on Kangaroo Island.

The idea that our trash is killing and harming animals and destroying entire ecosystems makes me extremely sad and irritated. With just a little effort we can recycle more, buy products without a lot of packaging and make conscious decisions that will help make our environment healthier for ourselves as well as the rest of the animal kingdom.

On September 25, 2010 82,263 volunteers cleaned up 1,227,825 pounds of debris from our beaches and inland waterways. –data collected by the Ventura County Coastal Cleanup Day

Luckily, there are tons of ways you can get involved now.. On September 15 (this Saturday!), hundreds of coastal clean-ups are happening around the United States. For a few hours, volunteers can join clean up crews to help pick up and clean up area beaches and coastal habitats. Check out Sign Up to Clean Up for volunteer opportunities in your area.

Some of the random and dangerous  items found during recent coastal cleanups include 64 umbrellas, 139 televisions, 72 barbeques and 155 toilet seats! – data collected by Ocean Conservancy

Tips for keeping our beaches trash free:

  • Don’t toss out cigarettes
  • Since a lot of trash can be mistaken for food (like bottle caps and plastic bags) make sure to throw trash away in animal proof trash cans. These trash cans usually have a special latch that has to be flipped in order for the top to open.
  • Use reuseable silverware, plates and napkins for picnics
  • bring reuseable bags to carry trash away from beaches and parks
  • keep storm drains clean and clear
  • Adopt a beach and commit to organizing cleanups at least three times a year

 Have you ever participated in a coastal cleanup? Are you going to this weekend?