Call to help clean beaches

Warren HatelyAugusta Margaret River Times
Augusta volunteers dug deep last year for the Tangaroa Blue beach clean-up.
Camera IconAugusta volunteers dug deep last year for the Tangaroa Blue beach clean-up.

The dates have been set for this year’s volunteer-run clean-up of the region’s beaches.

The Tangaroa Blue Foundation, which formed in Margaret River in 2004, has issued the call to citizen scientists, schools, families, community and corporate groups, and ocean-lovers to register for the 2019 WA Beach Clean-Up on October 19 and 20.

The clean-up has been strongly supported in the region in past years, with tonnes of rubbish and flotsam removed from the coast between Augusta and Busselton.

Waterways such as the Margaret River and the Blackwood will also be included as hotspots this year.

Although the annual event is a good chance to spruce up popular breaks, with litter removed and some rehabilitation work, the bulk of the debris is from shipping lanes off the Capes coast.

Tangaroa director Heidi Taylor said marine debris remained an “international problem”, but taking action on local beaches had a knock-on effect.

“Every piece of rubbish removed from the beach means less opportunity for marine animals to be impacted through ingestion or entanglement,” she said.

“The data that is collected also assists us to track litter to its source and create programs to change behaviour and stop rubbish at the source. We’re seeking volunteers from all walks of life to get involved and help remove marine debris from the coast, to collect data on what is being found, and to submit it to the Australian Marine Debris Initiative database.

“We can then start to work on solutions to stop the flow of litter at the source.”

Last year’s clean-up saw some 330,000 pieces of rubbish collected on WA beaches.

To get involved visit tangaroa blue.org.

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