NOAA's Response and Restoration Blog

An inside look at the science of cleaning up and fixing the mess of marine pollution

Lost Your Cell Phone? Try Looking at the Beach on September 15

Leave a comment

This is a post by the NOAA Marine Debris Program’s Asma Mahdi.

Last year on a September Saturday, nearly 600,000 people combed the world’s beaches and uncovered 195 lost cell phones at the International Coastal Cleanup. (Along with a few other strange finds—155 toilet seats??)

Weird finds from the 2011 International Coastal Cleanup

Weird finds from the 2011 International Coastal Cleanup. Click to enlarge.

Want to guess how many total pounds of trash were picked up during this concerted cleanup effort? In 2011, volunteers found 9,184,428 pounds of garbage, with cigarette butts leading the charge as the top item collected:

Top ten items found worldwide during the 2011 International Coastal Cleanup.

Top ten items found worldwide during the 2011 International Coastal Cleanup. Click to enlarge.

This will mark the 27th year for the annual International Coastal Cleanup put on by Ocean Conservancy, and for the past seven years, the NOAA Marine Debris Program has helped fund this effort.  Volunteers in more than 96 participating countries will head out to clean up their local beaches, waterways, and even neighborhoods. Over the past 26 years, more than 9 million volunteers have removed 153,790,918 pounds of trash!

How much trash will you help clean up this year?

Mark your calendar for Saturday, September 15th and sign up to clean up on the largest one-day volunteer ocean cleanup! Find a site near you and help keep the sea free of debris.

Asma Mahdi is an Outreach and Communications Specialist for the NOAA Marine Debris Program, a division of the Office of Response and Restoration.

Author: Office of Response and Restoration

The National Ocean Service's Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) provides scientific solutions for marine pollution. A part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), OR&R is a center of expertise in preparing for, evaluating, and responding to threats to coastal environments. These threats could be oil and chemical spills, releases from hazardous waste sites, or marine debris.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s