October 5 – San Diego Coastkeeper invites San Diegans to volunteer, learn and have fun

Coastkeeper hosts educational, volunteer and fundraising events in the fall and winter

SAN DIEGO, Sept. 6, 2011 – On Saturday, September 17, around 10,000 volunteers will visit 90 coastal and inland cleanup sites for a one-day attack on marine debris and inland pollution. This year, Coastal Cleanup Day coordinators I Love A Clean San Diego and San Diego Coastkeeper highlight on their website several green “in need” cleanup sites, where data from the annual event show a higher demand for volunteers. To reduce the event’s carbon footprint and individual waste, organizers also ask volunteers to select local sites in their own communities and to bring reusable buckets, bags, work gloves and water bottles.
“Trash travels from inland communities into storm drains which empty into our canyons, creek beds and eventually the ocean,” said Pauline Martinson, Executive Director for I Love A Clean San Diego. “That’s why it’s especially important for volunteers to lend a hand in their local neighborhood—our entire county needs a cleaning.”
To encourage participation in areas that need extra hands, San Diego’s Coastal Cleanup Day website, www.cleanupday.org features “in need” sites labeled in green in areas such as Clairemont, Normal Heights, City Heights, La Mesa, Tijuana River Valley and more. These sites were identified based on data from previous cleanups, indicating that some inland sites recover more debris as well as larger items such as tires, couches, and more.
“A recent statewide survey shows that this event significantly increases knowledge about the causes of marine debris—and that’s the first step in stopping the problem,” said Alicia Glassco, Education and Marine Debris Manager at Coastkeeper. “We see Coastal Cleanup Day as a hands-on educational event that connects residents to their neighborhood while removing harmful debris.”
I Love A Clean San Diego and San Diego Coastkeeper also ask volunteers to reduce their carbon footprint while participating in the event. Instead of traveling long distance to a site, volunteers should stay at their local cleanup locations and remember to bring their own reusable bag or bucket, work gloves and water bottle.
Last year in San Diego County, volunteer involvement rose to approximately 9,000 participants, with another 3,000 volunteers lending their support across the border in the U.S./Mexico-shared Tijuana Watershed. Volunteers removed close to 100 tons of debris from more than 80 cleanup sites along the coastline and in canyons, creek beds, lagoons, estuaries and open spaces.
This year, volunteers should register on the San Diego County event website at www.cleanupday.org. The website includes an interactive Google Map with all cleanup sites in the region, including a handful of green “in need” sites. Sites where registration is at capacity are denoted in red. Information for children, scouts, and groups are also available on the website.

SAN DIEGO, Oct. 5, 2011 – This fall and winter, San Diego Coastkeeper, the region’s largest professional environmental organization protecting inland and coastal waters, welcomes residents to attend events and volunteer for clean water.

Coastkeeper offers entertainment and educational events on:

  • Nov. 5: 15th Annual Ocean Gala at Westin Gaslamp Quarter. This event will provide an evening of sophisticated dining, recycled art shows, auctions and live entertainment.
  • Dec. 6: Signs of the Tide: Put a Lid on Pollution at Electric Ladyland Art and Music Center. Learn about how urban design can help fight San Diego’s largest source of ocean pollution. The event is free and open to the public.

Coastkeeper also gives opportunities to volunteer for its Water Quality Monitoring, Pollution Patrollers and beach cleanup programs.

Water Quality Monitoring, an essential component in establishing water quality trends in the county’s creeks and rivers, will occur on:

  • Oct. 15: No training (For return volunteers only). Field session begins at 9 a.m.
  • Nov. 19: Volunteer training at 8:30 a.m. Field session at 11 a.m.
  • Dec. 17: No training (For return volunteers only). Field session begins at 9 a.m.

Pollution Patrollers, new program training volunteers to identify true pollution incidents and violations of Best Management Practices, will occur on:

  • Dec. 1: Pollution Patrollers training from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Beach Cleanups, hosted alongside Surfrider San Diego Chapter, are as follows:

  • Oct. 8: Tijuana River Action Month – Cleanup at Dairy Mart Rd
  • Oct. 15: Tijuana River Action Month – Cleanup at Dairy Mart Rd hosted by Coastkeeper and 101KGB
  • Oct. 22: Torrey Pines State Beach Cleanup
  • Nov. 12: Cardiff State Beach Cleanup
  • Nov. 26: Ocean Beach Jetty Cleanup
  • Dec. 10: Imperial Beach Pier Cleanup

For more information about the events, visit Coastkeeper’s website at localhost/sdcoastkeeper or email Erin Reynante at outreach@sdcoastkeeper.org.

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Founded in 1995, San Diego Coastkeeper protects the region’s bays, beaches, watersheds and ocean for the people and wildlife that depend on them.  We balance community outreach, education, and advocacy to promote stewardship of clean water and a healthy coastal ecosystem.