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California | Santa Cruz Indymedia | Environment & Forest Defense | Health, Housing, and Public Services

Coastal Cleanup Day 2012 at Seabright Beach in Santa Cruz
by Bradley Stuart Allen ( bradley [at] riseup.net )
Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
Coastal Cleanup Day is said to be the largest volunteer event on the planet. Volunteers in over 100 countries around the world come together with the goal of preventing hundreds of thousands of pounds of pollution from trashing our oceans and harming marine wildlife. Saturday, September 15, was Coastal Cleanup Day 2012 in the Monterey Bay. At Seabright Beach in Santa Cruz, volunteers included local families as well as teachers and students from schools in Cupertino, Fremont and San José.
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[Pictured above: Santa Cruz High School Cardinals football players pickup trash along the San Lorenzo River below East Cliff Drive in Santa Cruz.]


Save Our Shores, the Santa Cruz-based nonprofit that coordinated the cleanups throughout the Monterey Bay, reports that 3,491 volunteers in Santa Cruz and Monterey Counties worked together to prevent 16,827 pounds of pollution and debris from trashing the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, littering our communities and harming marine life. 13,877 lbs. of the debris were trash, while 2,950 lbs. were recyclables.

The Monterey Bay cleanup sites with the most trash removed are all inland or river sites. The top five cleanup sites, as reported by Save Our Shores, were Elkhorn Slough (2,020 lbs.), Upper Carr Lake (1,960 lbs.), San Lorenzo River at the Covered Bridge (1,664 lbs.), Lompico Creek (1,425 lbs.), and San Lorenzo River at the Tannery (860 lbs.).

In Santa Cruz County, 2,354 volunteers spread across 76 miles of beach, river, lake, creek and slough to remove 9,947 pounds of pollution and debris. Meanwhile in Monterey County, 1,137 volunteers spread across 81 miles of beach, river, lake, creek and slough to remove 6,879 pounds of pollution and debris.

Save Our Shores conducts reoccurring monthly cleanups in Santa Cruz County on the 3rd Saturday of each month, as well as in Monterey County on the 2nd Saturday of each month.

Plastic Pollution Initiative

The goal of the Plastic Pollution Initiative by Save Our Shores is to reduce the amount of trash, particularly plastic pollution, reaching the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary and the ocean by providing the community with opportunities to participate in plastic pollution prevention and removal.

Through the Plastic Pollution Initiative, Save Our Shores also strives to help individuals make the connection between their lifestyle choices and the collective community impacts of plastic pollution on our oceans.

Core Components to the Plastic Pollution Initiative

1. Trash Cleanups: Save Our Shores organizes cleanups with the general public or individual groups on our local beaches and rivers as well as coordinate with kayakers and SCUBA divers to remove trash that has already reached the ocean.

2. Community Cleanup Days: There are several days throughout the year when SOS organizes community wide cleanups.
  • July 4th and 5th: SOS organizes Pollution Prevention Days on the 4th to educate people about plastic pollution, as well as organizes county-wide beach cleanups on the 5th.
  • Annual Coastal Cleanup Day: This is the largest cleanup day in the world, organized in over 100 countries with nearly 3,500 volunteers locally!



Bradley Stuart Allen is a photographer, Indymedia volunteer and website developer living in Santa Cruz, California. All content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Photo credit and a link to this article is appreciated. Support local independent media.
§Seabright Beach in Santa Cruz, California
by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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§Tracy's Bucket of Trash
by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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Pictured above is a bucket of trash picked up by Tracy, an alumna of Scotts Valley High School who graduated in June of 2003 as part of SVHS's first senior class. She is currently an Emergency medical technician (EMT) working for the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office as well as American Red Cross.
§Monta Vista High School Matadors
by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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Students from Monta Vista High School in Cupertino, California.
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by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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§Digger and Family
by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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Digger is a Santa Cruz local and military veteran who was stationed in Iraq during the Persian Gulf War (Desert Storm).
§Weighing Debris
by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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§Seperating Recyclables from Trash
by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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§International Coastal Cleanup Data Card
by Bradley Stuart Allen Sunday Sep 23rd, 2012 10:51 PM
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Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Becky Johnson
Monday Sep 24th, 2012 10:15 AM
Do homeless encampments "trash" the environment?

Let's do the math!!

see: http://www.beckyjohnsononewomantalking.blogspot.com/2012/09/analyzing-homeless-trash.html
by Keep It Real
Monday Sep 24th, 2012 12:01 PM
Ms. Johnson's methodology of cherry picking specific sights to defend her premise is weak science at best, trickery at worst. Attempting to portray data limited to beaches and waterways that bolster your case and then present it as indicative of the impacts on our open spaces by illegal camping is a sham. Also, she's using data from another cleanup and trying to portray it to this one.


--Ms. Johnson reports that "The San Lorenzo River Clean-up produced 315 lbs of trash by 130 volunteers in 3 hours or 2.4 lbs of trash per person at a rate of 0.8 lbs per volunteer hour". But that info. isn't from this cleanup!! This report from this week's Save Our Shores cleanup shows that 2 of the 5 worst polluted areas ARE THE SAN LORENZO. San Lorenzo River at the Covered Bridge with1,664 pounds, and San Lorenzo River at the Tannery with 860 pounds. So Ms. Johnson is showing the cleanest section of the river, from a previous cleanup to support her case, while ignoring the reality that the worst polluted spots are on the very same river.

-It's a sham when she conveniently ignores the data that 2 of the 5 worst polluted areas are ones that have high concentrations of homeless campers (San Lorenzo @ The Tannery, San Lorenzo @ The Covered Bridge. It's even more a sham when you acknowledge that most of the sites she's using as her evidence have no homeless campers as a norm (Carmel River State Beach? Cowells Beach), and the one that does (lower San Lorenzo River) is clean specifically because Public Works did a massive cleaning this summer while the City made it illegal to access the site.

-Twisting your evidence and statistics to support your opinion is not a credible way to show cause and effect evidence. Focusing on a quarter mile of river to support your claim as clean while ignoring the 2,500 lbs. of trash just upriver is not credible.

Thank you Coastal Cleanup Volunteers for your hard work and generous donation of your time to help keep our public lands clean!