Monday, November 28, 2011

Our Daily Ocean: Day 106

Ever since we got home from California, the weather here has been down right perfect.  I'm not sure that it can get much better than mid-70's in late November!  Knowing the warm days are numbered, we've been trying to spend as much time at the beach as we can.  Sunday afternoon-- after a couple of hours playing in the sand-- we met our friend Bonnie at Access 43.
 Not long ago, Bonnie went to Access 43 and picked up litter for 20 minutes... her focus is on plastics... but she took the time to count the 390 cigarette butts that she collected.  I've added that amount plus the 118 cigarettes that Bonnie picked up last night to the Community Count (on the sidebar).  Bonnie's addition pushes the Community Count for Wrightsville Beach to over 10,000!!!
Big things are happening with Bonnie.  She was recently selected as a finalist in the international competition "IN SEARCH OF INCREDIBLE."  I was sooooo thrilled when I found out that she was a finalist because 1.) I told Bonnie about the competition and encouraged her to enter.  2.) Others are recognizing how AWESOME.. err... incredible she is.  3.) Her art is something that everyone needs to see.  AND... 4.) An opportunity to create more awareness about plastic pollution in our oceans.
More awareness to this problem of plastic pollution is the opportunity to reach more people.  Believe it or not... there are people who don't know about the Pacific Garbage Patch... there are people who don't know that sea turtles mistake plastic bags as jellyfish... there are people who have no idea that albatross are eating plastic and feeding it to their young... and dying on one of the most remote islands on earth.
Last night, we picked up 179 bottle caps in 20 minutes.  In those bottle caps, I see Midway.  That makes me sad.  So I continue to repeat myself... I don't want to miss anyone.  I make no assumptions... even if I think you know... I just want to make extra sure, because this is important.  One of the most important things we can do is to stop using single-use plastics.  I started with something simple: I stopped buying/accepting/drinking beverages in plastic bottles.  Every time I see the photos of the albatross, I am reminded that my decision makes a difference.

20 minutes on November 27, 2011 at Access 43
Litter by weight: 1 lb 14.8 oz
Cigarette butts: 448
This is the area that we focused on for 20 minutes.  The section that is "turned up" looking is the section that we cleaned.
Total amount of cigarette butts removed from Wrightsville Beach, NC in 106 days: