053. 2010 Coastal Clean Up Day at Santa Monica Beach

It’s been a huge success – the 26th Annual California Coastal Clean Up Day. Many partook in picking up trash littered around Santa Monica pier and beach last Saturday, Sept. 25, 2010. I interviewed some of the people to ask the kind of trash they found scattered along the pier.

Thank you for all those who came out and contributed in cleaning up California coasts. And a big thank you to HealtheBay.org!

Hello everybody, it’s David Doucette and welcome to another episode of the Reside Daily Bite. We are here at Coastal Clean Up, Saturday morning in Santa Monica, California. We’re at the pier and we are cleaning up a lot of trash. We probably had over 400 people come here, so far. I have given probably 30 or 40 safety talks. It’s been fantastic; it’s been a busy morning. And now, we’re going to go interview people; find out why they came down here and find out the kind of trash that they picked up.

David: Welcome, we’re here with Nick, who is captaining the dive site here at Santa Monica pier. We’d been pulling out some interesting things. Nick, tell me what you’re looking for as they bring back the trash.

Nick: Well obviously, anything that they find. The point of getting out there today is to bring anything that shouldn’t be in the environment – plastics, bottles, as we’ve seen here, a lot of clothing items and strange rocks with vials taped to them. So, who knows what you’ll find.

David: Yes, we were uncovering a strange rock with a vial and then we stopped because we don’t know what that is. And Nick, is also from Heal the Bay so, we are doing a lot of great work here and we’ll continue to do that. I guess one of the things you’re looking for is any wildlife or crabs that have crawled into any bottles or cans?

Nick: Exactly! That’s one of the biggest problems with the debris when it gets into the ocean –as animals get tangled up in it and lot of times they ride back into the trash bags. So, we want to make sure that all that life does get back into the oceans (got to keep your eye out because there is always some wiggling).

David: Alright, thank you Nick.

Nick: My pleasure.

David: Alright, so here we are with my co-site captain, Art. We got pretty much everybody registered. They’re out and about. Now, they are going to be coming back with their bags. Art, what are we going to do?

Art: Okay, so first of all, when they come back, we actually are going to weigh the bags, so we know how much recyclables are were and how much trash are were on the beach. We are also going to pick what is the most unusual something that people had picked up. Actually, as of this point, it is two books from the Santa Monica library; so, those will be returned promptly. Everybody’s having a great time; it’s been a great day out here. I estimate, so far, we’ve had at least 300-400 people. It’s just wonderful; we’re cleaning the beach so families could come out here and enjoy the beach and not have to sit on some cigarette butts, plastics and all these other stuff. So, great day, David’s been great and Christine has been great. So next year, they’ll have their own site.

David: Right! Art has trained as well and now we’re going to get hit with another rush of everybody coming back to weigh their garbage ins. So, let’s go do that. Thank you Art.

David: So, here we are looking at some of the debris that the scuba divers pulled out from Santa Monica pier.

David: I’m standing here with Satish. And Satish, where did you drive from today?

Satish: From Hollywood.

David: From Hollywood, and how was it out there?

Satish: It was pretty quiet for a Saturday morning, I think.

David: What kinds of things were you finding in your group to pick up?

Satish: It was mostly cigarette butts and plastics like forks and knives and there are a lot of plastic caps, some food wraps but otherwise, we didn’t find anything peculiar or anything very dangerous.

David: Do you want to hold your bag up?  Let us see how big it is.

Satish: This is the recycle one. We have the separate bag for the regular trash.

David: Okay, great! Well, thank you for coming out. I’ll tell you how much I appreciate that.

Satish: My pleasure, thank you.

David: Alright, we’re here with some more volunteers, Leo and his group. Leo, tell me where you guys came from and I see you are all “Changing Tomorrow”. Tell me what that is about.

Leo: Yes, that’s “Chances” and actually acquired by Astellas, they are in the business of manufacturing medicines for cancer.  I decided it would be fun to take my nieces and nephew to come out and volunteer. Get away from the city for a bit and help out.

David: And what kinds of things did you picked up today?

Leo: Lot of recyclables, lot of plastics, lot of glass, cigarette butts and pretty much it.

David: Anything unusual?

Leo: Not really, not that I could think of. Crab legs, backbone of something…

David: Is this your first time doing this?

Leo: Yes, sure. Actually, yes it is.

David: So, we’ll see you back here next year?

Leo: I don’t mind. You want to come back? (to fellow volunteers)

David: You had some fun? (volunteers nod) Alright, thank you so much for coming.

Leo: No problem, thank you.

David: So what we’re doing now is, Art is weighing each of the bags and we’re keeping a tally of how much trash we are collecting.

David: Alright, I’m here with Marianna O’Brien. And Mariana came out today; she’s one of the volunteers. Did you have fun?

Marianna: I did, thanks.

David: What kind of stuff did you pick up today?

Marianna: Lots of little pieces of plastic and cigarette butts and some glass; all different kinds of things.

David: Did you find anything unusual?

Marianna: Toys, like Hello Kitty rings and other products that probably shouldn’t be in the beach.

David: Okay, and you said you’re a teacher here in Santa Monica?

Marianna: I am.

David: Very cool. Did you see any of your students here?

Marianna: I didn’t. I was looking for them but really, I was focused on the ground. At first, I was looking for them but then I got into looking for the pieces of trash. I hope that they’re here. I know Santa Monica high school has a lot of students who come and work with Heal the Bay. So, they’re probably here, I just didn’t see them.

David: Okay, how many cigarette butts did you pick up?

Marianna: Twenty-one.

David: Twenty-one, great. Well, thank you so much for coming out today.

Marianna: No problem, thank you.

David: Alright, I’m here with Jeffrey and Ashten, couple more of volunteers who came out to clean the beach today. Did you have fun?

Ashten: Yeah, we did. It was different because I’ve never done this before.

David: What made you  want to come out today?

Ashten: School, my teacher. I’m in marine bio class and she basically told us that, you guys do this to help the environment -with the beaches and stuff- so, I decided to come out today.

David: What kind of stuff did you pick up?

Jeffrey: We got a cigarette tip, not a cigarette –the cigar tip. We found one cigarette butt and we’ve got one bottle. We got like, little trash.

Ashten: Yeah, like little, tiny papers. We actually saw a person who found a Corona bottle, full of beer, in the sand. So that was just like, wow, this makes it a really big change for the environment if people come out and actually do this.

David: It really does. So, you’re going to come out next year?

Ashten: Yeah, I want to. I want to try and help the environment as much as I can especially the beach since we live here;  it’s just, why not take care of it.

David: Cool. Thank you so much for coming out.

Ashten: You’re welcome.

David: So here we are, we’re finishing up our Coastal Clean Up Day. They’re still coming in; they’re still bringing their bags in. You can see our bags of trash are growing over here, which is a good thing because a few hours ago that was all over the beach. So, we’re very excited about that and that is going to do it for me today…

Alright, so this is going to conclude our Coastal Clean Up Day. You can see, I am in front of almost 500 lbs of trash that we picked up this morning (that volunteers picked up this morning). And, we were expecting about 300-400 people to show up here at our site –Santa Monica pier. We actually had almost 1,000 people show up. We got them through in a 3-hour period. We had a staff of volunteers here; we had safety talks, which is one of the things I was responsible for. So, it was really great. We weighed all the trash. Everybody had a good time. And, I want to thank you so much for checking out The Reside Daily Bite.

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