Lets talk trash, shall we? By that, we mean the soda cans, takeout coffee cups, potato chip bags, candy wrappers, tires, car parts, beer bottles, disposable diapers, cigarette butts and all the other nasty detritus left on our local beaches.
Its nasty stuff, but on Saturday well have the opportunity to do something about it. Its the 29th annual California Coastal Cleanup Day, and volunteers will gather at 28 local beaches to collect garbage alot of garbage.
Last year, nearly 2,800 pounds of trash and recyclables were removed from SLO County beaches and creeks. That was a relatively small haul; the previous year, more than 30,000 pounds of trash were removed, though that included five appliances hauled out of local creeks and abandoned boats and trailers collected during a special cleanup in Los Osos.
Sure, in an ideal world, we wouldnt have to clean up other peoples messes, but the alternative allowing litter to build up on our beaches and possibly wash into the ocean is just plain gross. Trash makes beaches unpleasant places for us, its not exactly a turn-on for tourists, and its horrible for the marine environment.
And if thats not enough to persuade you to join the more than 1,000 volunteers expected on SLO County beaches, consider these perks: Every volunteer will be entered in a raffle for prizes donated by local merchants, and everyone will receive a coupon for a free burrito from Chipotle.
And heres the kicker: Youre going to be on the beach, said Michael Heater, Coastal Cleanup Day coordinator for ECOSLO. Its going to be gorgeous, and after the days event, you can hang out and relax.
WANT TO VOLUNTEER?
The coastal cleanup takes place from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at 28 beaches stretching from San Simeon to the Oceano Dunes. Exact locations are listed at http://www.ecoslo.org, or call 544-1777. Volunteers can also register online.
To reduce the amount of trash generated by the event, ECOSLO recommends that volunteers bring their own reusable gloves, water bottles and reusable bags or buckets.