Saturday, September 15 will mark the 39th anniversary of the Northcoast Environmental Center’s Coastal Cleanup Day (internationally, it’s the 34th anniversary). As many of our readers know, Coastal Cleanup Day (CCD) got its humble beginnings right here in Humboldt County as a program of the NEC in the late 1970s. With the help of the California Coastal Commission and the Ocean Conservancy, it has since grown to be the largest volunteering event centered on the care of the environment in California and across the world!
Last year, with the help of over 600 Humboldt County Coastal Cleanup Day volunteers, we removed almost seven tons of trash and recyclables from our beaches, rivers, bay and estuaries! Statewide, Californians picked up a total of 800,000 pounds and internationally over 20 million pounds of debris were picked up by over 700,000 volunteers.
This year the focus of Coastal Cleanup Day is the importance of putting a stop to pollution at the source. The plastic bag ban has brought emphasis to the need to address the source to stop plastic pollution. Manufacturers have direct control over what is put out into our environment. As consumers, we need to work together and show that we do not want our planet trashed. We can do this through local and statewide legislation. It is even more important now than ever to make our voices heard through actions such as CCD.
The NEC will again organize cleanups at more than 60 sites throughout Humboldt County with hopes to double participation and clean even more trash off our beaches. Coordinating such a large event requires an immense amount of staff time and community coordination. Therefore, in addition to seeking site captains and volunteers, we’re also currently seeking financial sponsorships to cover coordination costs. Contact Madison Peters at [email protected] for information on sponsorships to fit your budget.
How To Get Involved:
• Be a site captain! Site captains are the main points of contact for the cleanup teams at each site. If you would like to be a captain, choose a cleanup site on our website and sign up with the form link!
• Join a team! Choose the site you would like to help clean up, sign up with the link, and we will put you in contact with the site captain.
• Sponsor Coastal Cleanup Day! This is a fantastic way to support local cleanup efforts and publicize your business or organization as a friend to the ocean. The NEC has a number of sponsorship packages available and all include your logo on county-wide posters and recognition at a special Ocean Night event following Coastal Cleanup Day. Email [email protected] to find the support level right for you.
• Stand together to put a stop to trash! If a product can’t be reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled or composted, then it should be restricted, redesigned or removed from production.