Monday, April 25, 2011

Our Daily Ocean: Day 58

Saturday evening, as I walked up to Wrightsville Beach... I saw an overflowing trash can.  I looked around and saw trash everywhere... and in those quick glances... I knew that the beach was going to be trashed.  And I was right.       The beach was a complete mess... every direction we looked there was litter strewn about the beach.  Access 16 was in disarray and so my brain felt the same way.  But as much as I am bothered by how the beach was left by Saturday's beach goers, I wasn't completely shocked.  Looking at the state of the trash cans and recycling bins (above)... it was easy to see that even someone with the best of intentions could easily come up short.

Thankfully, we had extra help from Gabrielle Steele from the American Lung Association, who found me thanks to my Brita FilterForGood Film... emailed me and is now going to join us at Wrightsville Beach from time to time doing 20 minute beach clean ups!!  YAY!!
We also had help from my friend Bonnie of The Plastic Ocean Project, and Shirley... Bonnie's 83 year old (!!) mom.  As Bonnie says about her mom, "She's a testament that we can all help whether we are the ones who create litter or not."
Together the 5 of us removed nearly 16 pounds of litter from Access 16.  (ummm... yeah...just 5... my kids played the entire time and they had SO much fun!!)  As usual, nearly everything we picked up at Wrightsville Beach was used for just moments and then left, tossed, misplaced, blown and/or forgotten on the beach.  And... whether the litter happens purposefully or by accident... is usable or not... it's still litter.  


As warmer weather is now here and beach season is in full swing... I've decided to start separating and counting (most) everything that we find on the beach.  One thing that we find too often are plastic straws. *sigh* We picked up 22 on Saturday.  I'm committed to not using straws and I'm also very committed to helping others rethink their straw use.  Have you taken the time to participate in Glass Dharma's Glass Straw Earth Day Initiative??  It's easy. Write a letter to your favorite restaurants, copy your letter into the comments of my blogpost and email your letter to Glass Dharma.  Do ALL three steps by April 30 and Glass Dharma will mail you a FREE glass straw!!  Check it out here: Write a Letter... Get a FREE Glass Straw!!
Want to help with something else??  Sure you do!  ;)  NC Senator Thom Goolsby has sponsored a bill to repeal the plastic bag ban that is currently in place in the North Carolina Outer Banks.  If you or anyone you know lives in North Carolina, please take a moment to participate in this Surfrider Action Alert to preserve the plastic bag ban in the NC Outer Banks.  Please and thank you.
20 minutes on April 23, 2011 at Access 16

Litter by weight: 15 lbs 13.6 oz
Cigarette butts: 335
Go here see a full run down of what we picked up.  Also, all shoes and clothes that we remove from WB are donated and recyclables recycled. :)
Total amount of cigarette butts removed from Wrightsville Beach, NC in 58 days: