International Coastal Cleanup Day 2023
September 16, 2023
On Saturday, September 16th, 2023, The International SeaKeepers Society participated in International Coastal Cleanup Day, the world’s largest, one-day volunteer effort for our oceans and waterways. Spearheaded by Ocean Conservancy, Volunteercleanup.org organized 50+ simultaneous shoreline cleanups in Miami-Dade county, with SeaKeepers hosting a cleanup at Morningside Park. Participants had many locations to choose from, and we were joined by 38 volunteers consisting of new and familiar faces. During the two hour cleanup, our volunteers collected over 165 pounds of trash from the park’s grass, shoreline, and mangroves. Some volunteers brought their own Kayaks or rented them from Morningside Watersports and paddled out to the nearby picnic islands to collect trash from those areas that are frequently polluted. Large objects, like boat parts, pool noodles, shoes and fishing rods were found, as well as bottle caps, cigarette buts and microplastics that are often caught between the rocks on the shoreline. Volunteers were encouraged to use CleanSwell, Ocean Conservancy’s trash tracking app that allows participants to report the quantity and category of debris collected, which provides data for scientists and advocates. By removing debris from these picnic islands and coastal parks like Morningside Park, we can prevent pollutants from washing into Biscayne Bay, a process that is facilitated by daily rainstorms. We are thankful to all of our volunteers that assisted us in removing debris from our environment, and to Ocean Conservancy and Volunteercleanup.org for organizing an impressive turnout for International Coastal Cleanup Day in Miami-Dade!