Today’s blog comes from our Community Program Coordinator and co-Coastal Cleanup Day mastermind, Moriah Saldaña! Over the last few month, Moriah has worked closely with our Community Program Manager, Lexi Ambrogi, to ensure that our second countywide cleanup of the year was a success. Read on to learn more about preliminary totals and view snapshots from around the county!
The results are still coming in from Coastal Cleanup Day,
but one thing is for sure, Coastal Cleanup Day was an enormous hit! Whether our volunteers were at the beach picking up litter, removing graffiti in their local neighborhoods, or removing invasive plants from canyons, we know that San Diegans are now able to enjoy more than 100 clean outdoor spaces free of litter!
Coastal Cleanup Day in San Diego is part of a statewide and international cleanup effort to restore coastlines across the globe. The effort is coordinated statewide by the California Coastal Commission and internationally by The Ocean Conservancy. While international totals for 2015 are not available yet, in 2014, 560,000 volunteers in 91 countries picked up more than 16 million pounds of trash!
Our staff woke up extra early on Saturday morning to lead more than 200 volunteers in beautification projects at Emerald Hills Park in Encanto. While the focus of the morning was on various planting and mulching projects, volunteers cleared out over 2,700 pounds of debris!
As for the county as a whole, preliminary totals for Coastal Cleanup Day – San Diego indicate that we had over 7,500 volunteers cleaning up 105 local creeks, canyons, beaches and bays as part of this event! While the trash totals are still being compiled, we are expecting that more than 150,000 pounds of trash were removed from our county. On top of this, volunteers also beautified and restored the local environment through removing graffiti, removing invasive plants, building raised garden beds, and performing a variety of park maintenance projects.
Every year at this event, and at our other countywide cleanup, Creek to Bay in April, we see that cigarette butts and small plastic items are our most commonly found items. While unfortunately this isn’t that surprising, we are often stunned by some of the more unique pieces of litter that our volunteers find. Some of my favorites this year include a set of dentures in good shape, a full fish tank, a dragon statue and a MacBook computer.
Looking to join us at our next event? We have a quite a few volunteer opportunities coming up. Click here for more information on how to get involved!