As we head into summer, it’s a good time to remember how important it is to keep the beaches – and oceans – free of trash. From birds to fish, many animals are impacted by what we leave behind. Clearing away our waste means we enjoy a clean beach the next time we visit and more fun in the ocean.
Plastic bags take up to 20 years to decompose in water. A plastic container will linger for 450 years before it breaks down. Fishing line doesn’t decompose for 600 years!
Tips to keep the beach and ocean trash-free:
- Designate one bag for trash and one for recycling
- Use a towel clip to secure bags to a chair or use twine to tie them to the umbrella pole
- Place appropriate items into each bag throughout the day to make it easy to pack up when the sun goes down.
- Food contaminated items – plastic, paper, boxes, etc. – are not recyclable
- Pack food items in paper instead of plastic; better yet, bring reusable containers
- Bring beverages in reusable containers
- Encourage even the littlest beach-goer to properly dispose of trash & recyclables, by making it a game [and a teaching moment] – ask which items goes into which bag