Annual California Coastal Cleanup to be month-long event

STATEWIDE—September marks the 36th annual California Coastal Cleanup. The event, which started in 1985, typically is held the third Saturday of September across the state. This year, due to Covid-19, instead of meeting on a single date, cleanups will happen every Saturday in September from 9 a.m. to noon to allow for social distancing. 

Cleanups will be self-guided and can be done at local parks, shores, creeks, streets, sidewalks, drainage areas, natural areas, and trails. Marinas, yacht clubs, and other boating organizations are encouraged to participate. Volunteers can also collect trash with their family, friends, coworkers, scout troops, school groups or service clubs. Since cleanups will be self-guided, volunteers unable to participate on Saturdays, can also participate in cleanups any day and time. 

 The California Coastal Commission, which organizes the annual event, reminds volunteers to practice physical distancing and to strictly follow both local ordinances and the set of guidelines provided on the California Coastal Commission website. 

“Although the cleanup model will be different in 2020, it will still be an effective, educational, community-building event,” California Coastal Commission said in a released statement. “Trash within our neighborhoods will become the trash polluting our coast once the rains come.”

Participants are also encouraged to download the CleanSwell app on their smartphone before heading out and use it to count every piece of trash collected. Data collected through the app will be used to put together a more complete picture of Coastal Cleanup 2020.  

The California Coastal Commission put together a list of coordinator contacts for each county. They can be contacted for more information on local conditions and how to report results. The document can be accessed at coastal.ca.gov/publiced/ccd/Coord_info_for_web.pdf.

Boaters and boating facilities interested in participating are asked to contact their county coordinator and Vivian Matuk at vmatuk@coastal.ca.gov and provide the date, location of the local cleanup (waterways, beaches, parks, neighborhoods, etc.), and name of the boating facility (marina, yacht club, organization, association, aquatic center, etc.). 

Visit coastal.ca.gov/publiced/ccd/ccd.html for more information and guidelines.

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