Across the country, individuals are coming together to clean up their shorelines in the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup.
According to optimistic estimates, plastic remains in the environment for 300 to 600 years. Much of this ends up in the oceans, where it can leach chemicals and be accidentally ingested by animals. This brings about devastating consequences for the landscape, marine life, and even us.
Thankfully, individuals can make significant changes in their everyday lives to help solve this problem. Along with reducing the amount of plastic waste generated in the first place, one of the ways we can make a difference is by cleaning up our precious beaches and shorelines where waste, including plastic, accumulates.
The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, in partnership with the Vancouver Aquarium and the World Wildlife Fund among others, is a national initiative whose mission is “to promote understanding and education about shoreline litter issues by encouraging Canadians to rehabilitate shoreline areas through cleanups.”
Last year, the 2011 cleanup team cleared 143,737 kg of waste, including 71,200 plastic bags, 39,308 plastic beverage bottles, and 110,018 food wrappers. You can be part of the solution too! The 2012 Cleanup is September 15 to 23, but registration has started already, so don’t wait! You can register to be a participant or a site coodinator.
Visit the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup’s website for more information, to find a cleanup near you, to find instructions on how to get involved, and for curriculums for schools.