International Coastal Cleanup Block Island style

Fri, 09/16/2022 - 4:00pm

After a two-year hiatus, Barbara MacMullan, chair of the Block Island Land Trust and Kim Gaffett of The Nature Conservancy are coordinating a beach cleanup for September 18 as part of Save The Bay’s annual statewide participation in the Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup (ICC).
The ICC is an activity happening around the world to clean the earth’s shorelines of trash and debris, while also tabulating the amount and variety of that trash.
In this way the ICC provides worldwide data that is used by the Ocean Conservancy (and other organizations) to design and promote regulations that will lead to cleaner seas and waterways; and; also identifies increases and decreases in trash disposal at sea and along inland waterways.
The logistics for the 2022 Block Island ICC:
• Between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. stop by Fred Benson Town Beach to sign in and identify which beach you and your party will be going to. You will be able to get collection bags, gloves, tabulation sheets, etc. there. Look for us in the north parking lot. If you don’t have a favorite beach that you want to glean trash from, you will be assigned one that fits your abilities and time commitment. And, if you are not arriving with a “team,” we will be happy to
make the introductions and pair you up with another person(s).
• The ICC is not just picking up beach trash. The important part is collecting data about what types of trash are the most prevalent (cigarette butts versus fishing debris versus food wrappers versus plastic bottles, etc.). So, during your beach cleaning you and your team will be tabulating the types of trash you are finding.
• When you are finished at whatever beach you are working at, you return the bags of trash back to the meeting spot at the Town Beach where there will be a dumpster ready to receive your collection, and turn in your tabulation sheet.
Block Island’s participation in this international effort started in 2006. Since then we have enlisted the support of all open space and conservation organizations that own land and/or work on the island for the good of the island’s environment. However, it is the individual people – not the organization – that will make this effort a success.
Please join your friends, family and neighbors to help with this island-wide beach cleanup on Sunday, September 18, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Every contribution of time helps! It does not matter how much or little time you have, how much shoreline you cover, or how much trash you collect, every effort helps – participation matters.