Want to join more than 80,000 people to help protect our coast and shorelines? The 2011 California Coastal Cleanup Day is coming up this Saturday, and organizers are hoping to make this a record-breaking year by getting more than 100,000 people to come out and help the efforts.
Now in its 27th year, the California Coastal Cleanup Day is an annual beach and inland waterway cleanup effort and the state’s largest volunteer event. In 2010, over 82,500 volunteers removed more than 1.2 million pounds of trash and recyclables from beaches, lakes, and waterways.
Unfortunately, 80 percent of trash that gets into the ocean comes from inland areas through creeks and rivers. This trash, if not removed, can be harmful and even fatal to all manners of marine wildlife, can damage the state’s economy, and can even become a human health hazard. Coastal Cleanup Day encourages all citizens to join together to take care of the fragile marine environment, show community support for shared natural resources, and learn about the impacts of marine debris in a fun atmosphere.
The day also marks International Coastal Cleanup Day, an event that marks the largest effort around the world each year to keep our playgrounds clean. Organized by the Ocean Conservancy, this day helps to clean 145 million pounds of trash from the shores of lakes, streams, rivers, and the ocean on just one day each year.
Most clean ups start at about 9 a.m. and run until noon. Chances are clean ups are happening at your favorite major beach along the coast. There are about 800 cleanup sites in California, and worldwide there will be nearly nine million volunteers helping out in 152 countries and locations.