International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) is here and the Surfrider Foundation couldn’t be more excited to celebrate. ICC is one of the world's largest annual preservation and protection events led by volunteers in support of our ocean, waves and beaches. Since its inception more than 35 years ago, over 17 million volunteers have collected 350 million pounds of trash across 100 countries in celebration of ICC.
Beach cleanups are a powerful tool in the fight against plastic pollution. Not only do they help spread awareness of the plastic pollution crisis, but they can provide valuable insights into what is ending up on our beaches and in our waterways. By collecting data during cleanups, we are able to get a clearer picture of the types of products most commonly ending up as pollution. No surprise to us - plastic is the most commonly found material during beach cleanups, making up around 87% of all items found last year during Surfrider cleanups. The Surfrider Foundation can then use this data to help inform policy decisions and push for plastic reduction legislation.
On Saturday September 16th the Better Beach Alliance (BBA) presented in partnership by REEF and Surfrider will honor International Coastal Cleanup Day with seven events around the world. During this second annual global day of service for the REEF x Surfrider BBA, communities across six different countries including Surfrider US and our official Surfrider affiliates in France, Australia, Japan, Argentina, and Canada will come together for beach cleanups followed by festive gatherings to celebrate our collective impact. With each passing year since its inception in 2018, the BBA has continued to help expand our national, and alongside our affiliates, now international beach cleanup programs making significant strides in our global network’s fight against plastic pollution.
The Surfrider Foundation is pleased to be joining ICC by hosting beach cleanups across the country and equipping volunteers to host their own. Visit this page to find an event near you! If you aren’t able to attend a cleanup, don’t fret— check out Surfrider’s Beach Cleanup Activist Guide and learn how to hold your own solo or small group cleanup in your community. You can clean up your local beach, river, neighborhood, park— regardless of your proximity to the coast, every little bit makes a difference. Wherever you choose to celebrate ICC, don’t forget to collect data during your cleanup and share your findings with Surfrider.
Whether you join a Surfrider cleanup or hold your own, you can clean up your community, collect and share valuable data on your findings and help to fight for a plastic-free future!