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Coastal Cleanup Day
A New NormalLast year, the COVID-19 pandemic turned everything at the NEC on it’s head–including Coastal Cleanup Day. Difficult circumstances often give rise to creative new ideas, and Coastal Cleanup Day 2020 became a month-long event full of prizes, citizen science, and coastal stewardship. This year, we’ll be continuing the new tradition of Coastal Cleanup Month, while returning to the pre-pandemic zero waste goals of the event.
SafetyWith vaccination rates on the rise and the state’s official reopening in June, we are confident that we can safely host large outdoor events in a safe manner. Volunteers will not be required to wear masks at their cleanup sites, although you are welcome to if you wish. If you are uncomfortable gathering in large groups for your cleanup, we encourage you to participate with your family or friends in your own neighborhood, local park, or trail. Cleanup supplies (including medical sharps containers) will be available to check out for free through the NEC’s Lending Library. For more tips on how to conduct a safe and successful cleanup, check out our Safe Cleanups Guide
Citizen Science and Data CollectionCitizen science is a very important part of Coastal Programs at the NEC, and Zero Waste Coastal Cleanup Month is a perfect opportunity to collect data about the trash we see on our streets and beaches. Our Coastal Program’s staff and volunteers track marine and neighborhood debris to find local waste patterns (what kind of trash is being found and where) so we can advocate for waste reduction solutions in our community. See the data collection guide below to find how you can become a citizen scientist and contribute to a world wide marine debris database! As you are doing your cleanup consider being a trash detective and asking yourself these questions: How did the debris you found make its way to the street? Where is it coming from? What items are you finding most? What is the difference between trash in multiple areas? Citizen Science Resources:
- Data Collection Tutorial (link to trash trackers video)
- Plastic Pollution Action Journal
- NatGeo MapMaker Interactive *
Volunteer PrizesWe are so appreciative of our Coastal Cleanup Month volunteers that this year we are offering a chance to win prizes for participants! Every volunteer who fills out the Cleanup Results Reporting Form will be entered into a weekly raffle where they can win fun prizes. If you do more than one cleanup in a week, you can fill out the form again to increase your odds of winning! Follow the NEC on Facebook or Instagram to learn about the weekly prizes being offered. At the end of the month we will be offering prizes based on four categories. Prize Categories:
- Most Pieces of Trash Picked Up
- Most Frequent Volunteer
- Largest Item Picked Up
- Best Photo Submitted
Support Coastal Cleanup MonthThe NEC is Humboldt County’s Coastal Cleanup Day Coordinator and each year we inspire hundreds of volunteers to pick up thousands of pounds of trash around our community. This year we’re taking it to the next level with our month-long format and citizen science component, which will allow us to advocate for waste reduction solutions in our community. Here at the NEC we work on a shoestring budget and succeed only with determination, devotion, and aid from great volunteers. For 50 years, the NEC has served as a vital hub for information and programs that involve, inform, and inspire residents with regard to environmental issues that matter most on California’s north coast. From watershed awareness to climate action to beach cleanups the NEC has been at the forefront for all of us.
Show your support for Coastal Cleanup Day by purchasing one of our limited edition 5″ stickers for only $5! Only 50 available.