We go to the beach to enjoy its beauty, to feel reenergized by the ocean, to spend time on the soft sand. After a day spent at the beach, we leave tired – but the good kind of tired. The happy kind!
That’s the beauty of the ocean. It is a source of inspiration, joy, calmness, and peace for many.
We go to these places because they are prettier than anything men have ever built. They make us feel good in our bodies and in our souls.
Yet as much as we enjoy these environments, we are also harming them. The toxic products that we use and all the trash that we produce are ending in the ocean and destroying the environment at an alarming rate.
There are many ways to be kinder to the beach and the ocean. A really important one is by joining a beach clean-up! This volunteering activity gathers people together who want to make a difference. For a certain amount of time, everyone is joining their effort to collect trash that is laying on the beach before it ends in the ocean where it is much harder to clean and where it creates much bigger issues.
The coastal environment is a very complex and sensitive ecosystem. Humans, animals, plants all depend on healthy beaches and ocean.
The goal of the beach clean-up is to leave the area cleaner than it was before and to properly dispose of the trash found by recycling it when possible for example. By removing trash from the sand, we are preventing it to end up in the ocean and harming this ecosystem even more.
All this trash in the ocean is polluting the water. Toxins and germs are found in the ocean and diseases can easily be caught by humans going for a swim or surf or by marine life.
When participating in a beach clean-up, you are also helping to collect important data on the trash found on the beach. It is important to know which trash end up polluting this environment so we can take appropriate action to remove them at the source.
Ocean Conservancy volunteers removed 107,219 items of personal protective equipment (PPE) from beaches and waterways worldwide in the second half of 2020.
Knowing that PPE such as disposable masks and gloves are causing issues and polluting our ocean helps us take action.
At SellSage for example, we released a new collection called GloveUp. These 100% plant-based biodegradable gloves are a great eco-friendly alternative to help you stay safe without causing damages to the environment.
Click here to learn about how to reduce pandemic-related waste.
Using data also helped to identify the top 10 most deadly single-use plastic items for marine life found in the ocean & their eco alternatives.
In that list, we find plastic cutlery, plastic takeaway containers, and plates. Another area where SellSage is actively working on. By developing our compostable tableware made of naturally fallen palm leaves, we offer disposable solutions that are eco-friendly and safe. Our products turn back into compost in 45 days, leaving no trace behind!
To discover our collection of compostable tableware, click here.
Without knowing this information, companies and governments wouldn’t be taken the appropriate actions. Now more and more cities and countries are joining to ban single-use plastics to remove the problem from its source.
Joining a beach clean-up helps bring awareness for yourself and for others. Even if everyone at the beach isn’t part of the cleanup, seeing a group of people spending their Saturday morning picking up trash that isn’t theirs acts as a great wake-up call and a reminder to make sure to dispose of your own trash properly.
We know little about our ecosystems. And the more we learn about them, the more equipped we will be to protect them, and the more we will want to take care of them. By joining a beach cleanup you are also spending time in the environment and can learn valuable lessons from the organizations in charge.
Last but not least, by cleaning the beach you are making it way more pleasant to enjoy it! It has a beneficial ripple effect. By having a clean beach to start with, you are encouraging others to take more care of it. When you go into an area that is already clean, you usually want to leave it as clean. On the opposite, if you see a lot of trash lying around, we tend to think that a little more trash won’t make a big difference anyway and tend to be less careful.
Chances are, if you are reading this article, you are not the one leaving litter purposefully all over the beach. You are probably pretty careful about taking trash with you when you leave.
So you may ask yourself why should you care?
Because even if you are not the one littering, you still get to have an impact!
It’s also important to understand that trash that ends up on the beach hasn’t necessarily been brought to the beach. It could be litter that was carried by wind and rain for example.
By picking up that trash, you are making a difference. And taking action to create a solution to a problem is one of the most important things you can do if you are ready for a change!
There are many organizations that organize beach clean-ups depending on your area. Check out our list below or do a quick search to find out volunteering opportunities in your local area.
Plastic Free Fridays are running beach cleanups every Saturday of July, and then the first Saturday of every month after that – in the LA area
Ocean Blue Project helps you to start your own clean-up or link you uo to local clean-ups!
The Surfrider Foundation is involved worldwide. Check your local chapter to see what is happening near you!
Great Lakes Great Responsibility is taking actions around the Great Lakes! You don’t need to live near the beach to participate in a clean-up! Lakes need your help, too!
Ocean Conservancy helps you start your own clean-up and collect data along the way!
You don’t need to participate in an official beach clean-up to make a difference. Next time you are going to the beach or any nature spot, pick up the trash that you encounter, share your efforts with your friends & family to encourage others to do the same. Or organize your own little group for a beach clean-up!
Make sure to grab GloveUp Reusable Gloves to stay safe while picking up trash without adding on to the amount of plastic you’ll be collecting!
Thank you for helping to keep our beaches trash-free!