Turn your helping hands into a one-two punch to knock out pollution this weekend with I Love a Clean San Diego. Volunteers are needed for the 2013 Coastal Cleanup Day to pick up trash and debris littering beaches, waterways and urban areas. No matter where you live, there’s a location nearby.
Sites in Santee in need of volunteers include San Diego River, as well as nearby Mission Trails Regional Park and Lindo Lake in Lakeside.
The annual cleanup, coordinated by I Love A Clean San Diego, is in its 25 year locally, and is the largest environmental volunteer event in the county each year, according to organizers. About 8,000 participants will spread out across San Diego County to remove an estimated 100 tons of debris from local beaches, bays, creeks, and canyons over three hours Saturday morning.
According to ILACSD, the region’s 3.2 million residents and year-round tourism combine to generate an excessive amount of trash—with thousands of tons of it ending up on beaches and in waterways.
What kind of litter and debris is endangering wildlife and human health? The top five items found during last year’s cleanup were cigarette butts, food wrappers, caps and lids, plastic bags and plastic silverware.
You can help not only by volunteering, but by bring reusable supplies to the event, including your own water bottle for staying hydrated, a reusable bucket or bag for collecting trash, and work or gardening gloves to keep hands clean.
There are more than 90 coastal and inland cleanup sites throughout the county, though some of the more popular sites are filled. Volunteers are desperately needed in some other areas. Check the Coastal Cleanup Day map for a location near you and a list of the high-priority sites most in need of volunteers, including:
Buccaneer Beach and Buena Vista Creek in Oceanside
Frazee Beach and Tamarack State Beach in Carlsbad
Seaside Beach and San Elijo Lagoon at Mira Costa College in Cardiff
San Dieguito Lagoon and Dog Beach in Del Mar
University Channel and Alvarado Channel in La Mesa
San Diego River in Santee, and Mission Trails Regional Park
Lindo Lake in Lakeside
Chollas Creek in Lemon Grove
Tijuana Estuary in Imperial Beach
The 2012 Coastal Cleanup Day is scheduled for 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 21. You must register to participate as a volunteer. Groups are welcome. Youth in grades K-6 are invited to decorate their reusable buckets for the Bling Your Bucket contest.
For more information or to register, visit http://www.cleanupday.org.