Each year, volunteers band together to pick up trash along fragile coastal waterways and in Pasco County streets for the International Coastal Cleanup. This yearly event is always held on the third Saturday in September. The 2020 event was held on Saturday, September 19.
The event attracts hundreds of thousands of volunteers from around the world who spend a few hours removing trash and debris from beaches, lakes, rivers and inland areas, while keeping track of every piece of trash they find. The Ocean Conservancy uses that information to produce an annual country-by-country, state-by-state index of the problem of marine debris. In 2020, 922 volunteers worked for 3,248 hours and picked up 19.52 tons of trash in 36 locations throughout Pasco County.
“There are so many people in our community that are concerned about the environment,” said Kristen King, Keep Pasco Beautiful Coordinator. “They realize that the plastic bag thrown on the side of the road will eventually make it out to the Gulf, which can be deadly for marine animals such as turtles and fish. Our hope is that the cleanup will not only get debris off our streets and waterways, but also educate the public on the dangers of litter and the problems it causes.”
This year, the event will take place at locations throughout Pasco County on Saturday, September 18. T-shirts will be provided while supplies last, along with trash bags and disposable gloves. Volunteer registration is open through September 10 on the Keep Pasco Beautiful website, keeppascobeautiful.org/coastal-cleanup .
For questions including sponsorship opportunities for Pasco County Coastal Cleanup, call 727-834-3611 ext. 1072 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.