Archive for the 'Events' Category

Registration Open for 33rd Annual Coastal Cleanup Day

Get registered today at www.CleanupDay.org!

Registration officially is open for San Diego County’s Coastal Cleanup Day! While the name Coastal Cleanup Day suggests that this cleanup is all about the beach, many of you already know ILACSD’s volunteer efforts reach far beyond the coast. With eighty percent of marine debris originating in inland areas, at ILACSD we have expanded our Coastal Cleanup Day reach to include both inland and coastal territory. This year, sixty-five percent of the cleanup sites are located inland along rivers, creeks, canyons, and urban areas with the aim to stop debris before it makes its way to the ocean. We even have 3 clean ups happening on the water with kayaks! With 114 cleanup sites last year, volunteers removed 185,000 pounds of debris from San Diego County – the equivalent weight of 10 garbage trucks! Help us remove even more trash and debris and beautify our county by getting registered for this year’s Coastal Cleanup Day on September 16, 2017, from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM! Get registered now at www.CleanupDay.org!

Cut back on waste by bringing your own reusable buckets, work gloves, and water bottle if you have them!

In an effort to reduce waste produced by an event of this size, Coastal Cleanup Day volunteers can pledge to bring at least one reusable item to the cleanup. When volunteers bring their own reusable water bottle, work gloves, and bucket to collect litter, they prevent thousands of single-use bags and disposable gloves from entering San Diego’s landfills. When you register, please consider pledging to bring one of these items with you (or all three)! Once again, we will be having our “Bling Your Bucket” competition for Coastal Cleanup Day. Participants have the opportunity to decorate their reusable buckets showing off their creativity and imagination and submit photos of for the chance to win fun prizes and have their picture posted on the Coastal Cleanup Day website for one year! Volunteers of all ages are also encouraged to participate!

Participate in the Sony Photo Contest for the chance to win a Point & Shoot Camera!

The Sony Photo Contest is also returning to Coastal Cleanup Day! While you spend the morning helping to preserve our environment, snap some pictures of all of your hard work! After attending Coastal Cleanup Day, participants can submit their best photo from the event into the competition where the top five finalists will be put to a vote on the ILACSD Facebook page. The winner will receive a Sony Point and Shoot Camera!

We also collect valuable data about the debris collection that helps us understand how we can better prevent litter. Instead of using paper data cards, ILACSD is asking volunteers to download the Ocean Conservancy’s user-friendly mobile data collection app, Clean Swell, onto their smartphones as another way to cut back on waste.

Bring the whole family and join us for Coastal Cleanup Day on September 16th!

Not only will we be removing litter on Coastal Cleanup Day, the event also includes beautification projects such as graffiti removal and replacement of invasive species with drought-tolerant alternatives. Volunteers who signup will work with ILACSD to preserve and enhance San Diego for current and future generations to enjoy. Leading the way to a zero waste, litter-free, and environmentally engaged San Diego region, ILACSD encourages all community members to take action in their neighborhood by joining us on September 16th. Registration information and details regarding Coastal Cleanup Day can be found at www.CleanupDay.org.

Summer Social 2017: Toasts, Tacos, and a Tremendous Time!

On Saturday, June 24th, I Love A Clean San Diego celebrated our annual Summer Social: “Toasts & Tacos”

Delicious tacos from Rubio's and tasty beer from ChuckAlek at our Summer Social!

Delicious tacos from Rubio’s and tasty beer from ChuckAlek at our Summer Social!

This SOLD OUT event brought over 100 guests to the ChuckAlek Biergarten for a fun and relaxed afternoon to support the environmental and educational programming offered by ILACSD. Guests enjoyed delicious tacos from Rubio’s Coastal Grill, as well as signature craft beers by ChuckAlek Biergarten.

 

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Iliana Ortiz & Dee Jay Acoustic Duo (featuring David Sullivan on drums!)

Lively music was provided by the local group, Dee Jay & Iliana Acoustic Duo (featuring David Sullivan on drums), kept the party going with their fresh takes on some of our favorite songs. A lively raffle was held with terrific prizes such as homemade jam made by an ILACSD Board Member, tickets to the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park, a set of tickets to an upcoming San Diego Padres game, lunch for two at the Liberty Station Slater’s 50/50 restaurant, and the most sought after item—a one night stay at local luxury hotel, Tower 23 in Pacific Beach with a generous gift certificate for dinner for two at adjoining restaurant, JRDN.

Can't win if you don't play! A few attendees hoping their raffle tickets are lucky!

Can’t win if you don’t play! A few attendees hoping their raffle tickets are lucky!

Funds raised at this event support the ongoing educational programming, community cleanup events, recycling and hazardous household waste information services, robust internship program, and other volunteer efforts of I Love A Clean San Diego. We are so appreciative of all our new and old friends who joined in this terrific event! Save the date for the next ILACSD fundraiser, our annual fall social, “Brews on the Bay”, which will be held on Thursday, October 12th from 5:30 pm-8:30 pm at the beautiful Catamaran Resort Hotel. Limited sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Janelle Hickey, Development Manager, at 619-704-2788 or via email at jhickey@cleansd.org.

Did you miss out on the fun at “Toasts & Tacos”? Make sure to reserve your tickets asap for “Brews on the Bay” when they go on sale on August 1, 2017!

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This article was authored by our Development Manager, Janelle!

“Salt.” Where Does it Go?

Today’s blog post was written by guest contributor and High Tech Middle Media Arts 6th grader, Regan G.A.ocean

You may be wondering where the salt goes after desalination? You might think that it wouldn’t be harmful at all to where it’s put, right? After all, “It’s just salt”.

Desalination Explained

Desalination is the process of removing salt from ocean water to make it pure and drinkable (Desalination by reverse osmosis). A desalination plant is where this process is done. They collect the water from the ocean and remove the salt.

Where “Salt” Goes

Most of the time they put whatever is left of the “Salt” back in the ocean at some distance from the desalination plant (Answers Corporation). This can be very harmful considering that the salt can become a chemical that can be difficult to break in the process of desalination (Green Garbage Corporation). Some plants like the Tampa’s Plant, in Florida, have found a different way to dispose of the brine. The Tampa’s Plant has discovered a way to use the brine as energy. They use brine to produce part of the energy for desalination. I don’t really understand why they don’t share their amazing discovery with the rest of the facilities.

Plants like the Tampa’s Plant are located next to waters with a high energy swell. When the salt/brine go back into the water it will mix better. An energy swell is a powerful large pushing movement. The further away the salt goes, it goes into a pipeline. This pipeline helps reduce the effect that the salt and brine can cause onto sensitive marine life. It acts sort of like a filter that takes the brine away from some sensitive marine life like seagrass and reef systems.

How It Can Affect the Environment

Putting the leftover brine in the ocean can be very harmful (Marine Impacts). The brine is so rich in salt that it can contaminate any environment it is placed in. This can also damage the plants and animals around it. If the Tampa plant would just share their idea, the brine would stop killing plants and animals. If they came up with this idea and don’t share it with other desalination plants, then is it really any use to the environment?

There are also some more effects that can harm the bottom of the sea (Green Garbage Corporation). When the salt is filtered from the water it is put aside as “Waste Water”. The water is heavier than the sea water so if it is incorrectly put in the ocean then it would sink to the bottom in calm water from the lack of oxygen. It will come down in a plume of salty water that can kill organisms and animals at the seabed. This is terrible because some microorganisms live deep in the water and can get killed. Some of these microorganisms help the temperatures of the planet stay low by producing oxygen through photosynthesis.

One Phytoplankton microorganism

One Phytoplankton microorganism

Thank you for reading this now you know where the salt and brine goes and how it can affect us. Now, remember that it’s not “Just Salt.”

 

About the Author:

Regan is a 6th grade student at HTMMA on the Brady/Joy/Grace team. She enjoys writing, art, science, reading, and dancing. She really hopes that you found this helpful and enjoyable. Thank you! 

This article is originally posted on the HTMMA Project Page and is reposted here with permission. Check out the entire collection of articles from the HTMMA students here.

Toasts & Tacos: Summer Social 2017

beerSan Diego summertime is pretty much unbeatable. Start with a beautiful, sunny beach day, enjoy drinks with a view, and load up on some tasty tacos with friends. How can you really top that? That’s why this year’s Summer Social has it all! It’s all said in the event name: Toasts & Tacos!

Taking place on June 24th at the ChuckAlek Biergarten, our Summer Social brings together some of San Diego’s finest attributes together: sunshine, craft beer, delicious tacos, and a good cause– keeping San Diego clean. Your ticket to the social gets you one free craft beer from ChuckAlek Biergarten and access to our taco bar featuring food from Rubio’s Coastal Grill. All of that for only $15! How can you beat that deal? With games, a raffle, live entertainment and more, this is an event not to be missed!

All proceeds benefit I Love A Clean San Diego and help provide educational and community-based programming focused on a zero waste, litter-free, and environmentally engaged San Diego region.

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Happy supporters of ILACSD at the 2106 Summer Social! Pick up your “Toasts & Tacos” tickets today!

There is still plenty of time to be a part of this exciting mixer that also benefits our local environment. Get all the details below, and reserve your spot today. I’ll see you there!

I Love A Clean San Diego’s Toasts & Tacos: Summer Social 2017

June 24th, 2017, 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM
ChuckAlek Biergarten
Click here to reserve your spot!

Thank you to the incredible sponsors, Rubio’s and ChuckAlek Biergarten, who are making our Summer Social Possible.

Zero Waste Tips for your Summer Shindig

Spring is among us, and summer will be here before most of us even know it. By San Diego standards, that means cookouts, beach days, and barbecues galore. For zero waste enthusiasts, the often-present plastic utensils, plates, and bottles can sometimes overshadow the excitement of these events. Whether you are a seasoned party host or it is a special occasion, the I Love A Clean San Diego team wants to help prepare you with some tips to make it the top, zero waste soiree of the season!food-summer-party-dinner

Gathering Supplies:

Preparation is key to a successful, sustainable cookout. To create an eco-friendly environment for your event, you will want to consider stocking up on some reusable party essentials. For grilling, reusable metal skewers and grilling baskets come in handy. Instead of plastic plates and utensils, head to your local thrift store to mix and match reusable dishware and utensils. You may even find some great serving platters while you’re at it! The eclectic plates can add a funky touch to your décor. Ditch the wasteful paper napkins and plastic tablecloths for reusable cloth napkins and tablecloths. This will immediately make your party style stand out while saving on waste! Red plastic cups can be substituted with Ball mason jars and reusable straws to class up any cocktail!

While some may be the official cookout host among their cohort, there are options for hosting a zero waste shindig without stocking up. Whether you lack the space to store all the extra dishes or just rarely host, rental companies can often come in handy. This option may not be right for everyone, but renting can sometimes come out to be cheaper for the infrequent, eco-friendly host. They can supply everything from serving platters, dishes, cutlery, glassware, napkins, and tablecloths.dinner-meal-table-wine

Food and Drink:

While shopping for foods, don’t forget to bring your reusable mesh or cloth bags, jars, and other containers. Buying in bulk is always a cornerstone to any zero waste tips list. Check out the bulk food section for all your party snack foods. Skip out on those individually packaged cheese slices and opt for the deli counter or a local farmers market. The farmers market is also a great place to get locally sourced, organic vegetables. Focusing your grilling around vegetables can help make your party even more eco-friendly.

No party is complete without a varied selection of drink options. However, you can cut back on the waste by offering bulk drink options in large glass dispensers. Water, lemonade, and sun tea (you can compost those tea bags) all work well for this serving style. This drink technique also helps cut out all of the single use water and soda bottles. You can look into local breweries and wineries to fill up reusable bottles and growlers for your party as well. Growlers of San Diego’s finest craft beers are sure to take any celebration up a notch!

Clean Up and Compost:

Just as we mentioned in our Zero Waste Festival Guide, it is best to make your set up as easy as possible for those who are less experienced with recycling and compost. Consider setting up a row of bins that are all clearly labeled for compost, recycling, and landfill. You may also want to set another bin out with a bit of water for a location to collect all of the dishes. This can make the cleanup process a bit quicker when bringing in the plates and cutlery for cleaning. For any leftovers, keep your Bee’s Wrap handy. The reusable alternative to plastic wrap can also be used around kindling to start a fire if your party lingers on into the night.

Pick up more tips and knowledge by attending our second annual Zero Waste Fair on June 17, 2017, in Encinitas! For more information on how to adopt a waste-free lifestyle visit WasteFreeSD.org. For more information about our educational programs, contact education@cleansd.org.

COME TOGETHER: Kids’ Ocean Day 2017

I Love A Clean San Diego once again partnered with the California Coastal Commission for our 19th annual Kids’ Ocean Day. On May 18, 2017, over 900 students, teachers, and volunteers united together to clean up Mission Beach and the surrounding area. These dedicated 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders rallied together from 7 local schools to protect our oceans by collecting thousands of pieces of litter and marine debris. Common items found during the cleanup included small pieces of plastic, snack wrappers, straws, and Styrofoam. The students’ cooperative energy and childlike verve were tangible on the beach that day.

Students from Porter Elementary show off the waste they collected and their shirts decorated with this year’s theme – COME TOGETHER.

Students from Porter Elementary show off the waste they collected and their shirts decorated with this year’s theme – COME TOGETHER.

Following the cleanup, students united with community volunteers to form an aerial art image. One of the most common questions we receive is, “how do you make the aerial art happen?” Here’s a peek behind the curtain:

Each year, I Love A Clean San Diego’s education department designs an aerial art image that follows the statewide theme for all 5 Kids’ Ocean Day partners. On the day of the event, the ILACSD aerial art team assembles before daybreak to produce the much-anticipated image. Equipped with irrigation flags, surveyor’s tape, and extra-long measuring tapes, our amazing staff spend the wee hours of the morning meticulously plotting each and every point of the aerial artwork image. This year’s theme – COME TOGETHER – draws on the power we have when united in our efforts to protect and defend the oceans and coastlines from pollution.

As students began to file into the formation, anticipation was high; everyone was excited to see the helicopter fly overhead, photographer inside, capturing our hard work from the sky. It was a gratifying moment to see all the students, teachers, volunteers, and staff sit in stillness within the image for 10 brief minutes. After months of planning, we were all rewarded with a powerful piece of art so vast it can only be seen from the sky.KAAB2017finalimage

The success of the day could be measured by the faces of the beaming students. They felt a sense of accomplishment from doing their part to help clean up the environment. The students now stand united as true “Scholars for the Sea!”

Kids’ Ocean Day is a magnificent event that helps to bring environmental awareness and stewardship to the forefront of these students’ minds. It is a day of joining forces and demonstrating to the kids what it means to work together as one. The students walked away from Kids’ Ocean Day feeling empowered and armed with the understanding that their personal choices have power and their everyday actions will impact our environment and our future.

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Come Together This Kids’ Ocean Day

Today’s blog post was written by Education Specialist, Alaine

We’re counting down the days for the 24th Annual Kids’ Ocean Day on Thursday, May 18th at South Mission Beach!

Last year, 950 students, teachers, and volunteers called for a “sea change” with this powerful image, reminding individuals to be conscious of their impact on the Pacific Ocean:

2016 Kids’ Ocean Day Aerial Design

This year, students from eight Title 1 schools across the county, along with students across four other cities in California, will attend an assembly about ocean conservation, learning how we’re connected to the ocean through the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the beaches we use for recreation. Students will then put their knowledge to practice and get hands-on experience protecting our marine environment.

2016 Kids’ Ocean Day volunteers

They will begin their day picking up litter across the beach to learn firsthand how different kinds of pollution travel through the watershed and harm our ocean. For some students, this unique experience will be their first visit to the beach!

2016 Kids’ Ocean Day volunteer

Following their hard work cleaning up the beach, each student will make their mark with our aerial art image. As small, individual dots in the big picture, they will unite to call humans to “come together” as protectors of our environment. Just how hundreds of people create a beautiful and powerful image in the sand, our combined small actions have a significant impact on the condition of our oceans. With over 5 trillion pieces of plastic floating in the world’s oceans, and a Pacific Garbage Patch growing to be twice the size of Texas, this is a crucial time to unite our efforts and address global problems to create a cleaner future.

2017 Kids’ Ocean Day aerial design

2017 Kids’ Ocean Day aerial design

If you would like to be a part of this event, we’re looking for adult volunteers (18 and older) to lead students during the cleanup and the aerial art. If you’re interested, please register here. As a thank you, all volunteers will receive a photo of the completed aerial art image as a keepsake! Stay tuned to our social media channels (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) on May 18th to see the final image.

5 Ways to Celebrate a Green Valentine’s Day

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Today’s blog was written by Recycling Programs intern, Kayla!

Valentine’s Day is a day to share love, romance, and affection. Whether it means spending time with a significant other, family member or group of friends, it’s a chance to celebrate what matters most in life: our connection with others. Traditional gifts of flowers, boxed chocolates, and jewelry are popular on Valentine’s Day, but they come at a significant environmental cost. Valentine’s Day generates a vast amount of CO2 emissions in the production, transportation, and disposal of romantic gifts. The pulp and paper industry is one of the largest contributors to air pollution, deforestation, and our overcrowded landfills. Disposable items such as candy wrappers, cardboard gift boxes, greeting cards, and wrapping paper add up fast and most of the waste ends up at local landfills.

So how can you celebrate while also showing some love for the environment? Here are 5 ways to celebrate a green Valentine’s Day this year.

Find a Romantic Viewpoint or New Sunset Spot.

Sometimes a shared moment in nature is the best kind of gift. Go to the beach, find a new hiking trail, walk along the harbor, picnic in the park…get outdoors and spend some quality time with your Valentine! For new outdoor options, check out secret spots in San Diego for inspiration.

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Plant Together.

Instead of giving a bouquet of flowers or the traditional red roses, change it up this year and buy a plant for your Valentine. Plants are beautiful, less pricey, and benefit the environment. Plant your new “love” plant together in your garden and watch it grow and blossom over time. This can be a lasting reminder of your relationship and love!

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Cook a Romantic Homemade Dinner.

Valentine’s Day usually means reservations and crowds at your favorite dinner spots. You can avoid the stress and increase the fun by preparing a romantic dinner at home. Take this time to make that vegan recipe you’ve always wanted to try or prepare a favorite meal together. Couples who cook together, stay together.

When buying your ingredients, think local. Not only will your products be more fresh and tasty, but you will also be supporting your local businesses. Visit one of the many farmer’s markets around San Diego County for your ingredient needs. If possible, avoid packaging and make your meal vegetarian or vegan! This can help reduce landfill waste and lower your carbon footprint. We love these 12 Vegan Valentine’s Day Desserts from Minimalist Baker.

 

Create a Homemade Gift.

Sometimes finding the perfect gift on Valentine’s Day can be very difficult. Surprise your loved one with a homemade gift! Instead of buying something generic, show your Valentine how special they are to you. Craft a handwritten love letter or poem on recycled paper. Bake lavender cupcakes. Make this simple DIY lip balm in a reusable jar. Check out the I Love A Clean San Diego Pinterest for more ideas.

 

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Volunteer.

Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community! This Valentine’s Day, plan a volunteer day with your loved one. There are numerous options in every community–in fact, we have our annual Cupid’s Cleanup this Saturday at Bay City Brewing Co! This can be a way to meet new people, get some fresh air and make a difference in your community.

 

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How will you celebrate Valentine’s Day this year?

Sam’s First Time Driving Our EV

Many of us know by now that the benefits of driving an electric vehicle are plentiful, but a lot of us don’t know what it actually feels like to drive one. If you’ve been wondering about the experience of driving an EV, keep reading to hear what it was like for I Love A Clean San Diego’s Contract Manager, Sam:

Alright, step on the brake, I’m 90% sure this works just like any other car, I said to myself as I hopped into our Fiat Electric Vehicle for the first time. It was definitely unusual to see the layout of this car vs. a standard car. No stick shift, just buttons for transmission, battery life display, the works. It felt a little like I was in the DeLorean from Back To The Future. This car was so simple that it made me a little nervous at first, like I had to be missing something. Turns out, it was really just that simple.

I pushed the key into the ignition and began to rotate the key to start the engine, immediately noticing how quiet the engine was. I sat in limbo for a few seconds, wondering if the car was actually on and ready to go .  Compared to my own car engine, which rumbles really loudly (I prefer the term purr) the electric vehicle is as quiet as a church mouse. It’s actually a very strange, and pleasant experience. Press the “D” button, and you’re ready to go on a smooth, fast, quiet ride.  Handling was great, acceleration was great, and there really didn’t feel like much of a difference from a standard car at all. If anything, it felt like I was floating around instead of operating a very noisy piece of machinery.

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One of the most unique parts of the electric vehicle is the battery life display on the dashboard. It shows how the battery seems to magically charge in stop and go traffic. We’re in the future kids! Turns out that unlike conventional vehicles, that annoying foot-on-and-off-the-brakes traffic is good for electric vehicles, because they charge every time you stop. And you can top off the charge when you get home with the same ease of plugging in your cellphone.

“Wait, so, I can just plug the car into the wall at home? Are you serious? It charges like that?” It sure does. Like I said, the fact that it’s so simple scared me at first, but it’s the real deal, easy as pie. There’s no secret that this is the way of the future. Tesla, GM, Toyota, and virtually any automaker knows this. It’s just a matter of time before these babies are popping up all over the place.

It would be a major deal to have electric vehicles dominating San Diego streets instead of standard combustible engines. Think about it this way: the driving of conventional vehicles accounts for a whopping 47% of greenhouse gas emissions in San Diego County. If we all start driving electric vehicles, which don’t contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, it wouldn’t just be a step in the right direction. It would be an Olympic leap in the right direction. So, if you’re in the market for a new automobile, check out the electric vehicles that are currently on the market. There are great rebates to encourage people to buy them, so it’s a financially smart decision, too. SDG&E has a ton of information to help you find the one that’s right for you. We’ll see you on the road!

 


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