Channel Islands National Park

It was Coastal Cleanup Day so there were many people from all age groups here at this beach. I think a big reason why people came out on this particular day was for recognition and incentive. Many people showed up through organizations or schools. For example, some of the groups that came were REI staff, Channel Islands students, and girl scouts. Some of these groups probably had to take part for community hours, or even want to go because they wanted recognition for going. Some people like the incentive to go to these things even though we should always be picking up some trash when we go to the beach. The incentives that I noticed were free snacks, free shirts, and free day passes to any park of your choice. The big prize at the end of staying was a basket of goodies including a REI backpack. This shows the culture of people and how others can be motivated.

The goal of the day was to pick up anything that wasn’t natural to the beach environmental like trash but nothing organic. My group and I recovered many large glass bottles, fishing line, and even a fishing hook. I also noticed quite a few areas with wrack, washed up kelp. We recovered these items along the shore by the rocks. We figured people would be walking along the beach because of its easier access so we decided to go the harder route and climb the jagged rocks! I believe because how easy and secluded these rock areas were, we could find many bottles and cans from alcoholic beverages. Most of these items were still enacted and not yet broken into a microplastic, which is good because we stopped it in its tracks! If it did turn into a microplastic it then would have been ingested and gone up the trophic levels. This beach is located right at the harbor where many tourism activities occur and take place constantly. This could really have an effect on the trash buildup and the erosion. Those are the two main things I noticed at this location.

Today made me realize that many people aren’t informed about this situation of trash buildup we have because so many of the volunteer’s faces were shocked when they weighed their trash and realized they just collected 7 pounds of it! Sure, we can read about issues occurring but when someone goes out and has a first-hand experience with it they become connected. So, after today I am hoping some of the volunteers will go home with a different look on how we take care of the beach and how they can do their part.


9 thoughts on “Channel Islands National Park

  1. Gorecki says:

    I can 100% say that I am one of those people who always feels more connected and personally responsible for caring for our planet after I do any sort of volunteer work. Seeing how many people came out to coastal clean up for the first time was re-inspiring for me made me appreciate our environmentally friendly communities.

  2. Schmitt says:

    Interesting perspective on the motives of individuals, I am curious wether or not the REI employees where being paid to be there. Ether way like you stated at the end it, those free shirts and snacks brought people out to the beach to experience first hand how humans are affecting the beach. Maybe all those people will now come back motivated by a want to help the environment instead of free stuff.

  3. Barton says:

    It did seem that there were ulterior motives that brought people to this clean-up spot. It would be interesting to know if the companies like Amgen and REI that attended this clean-up have some kind of required community service hours they must meet each year. Either way, it was awesome to see such a big crowd turn up for this event.

  4. Gusmeroli says:

    What a great beach clean up that was. Not shocked that you found fishing line and hooks, its unfortunate that fishermen/women will leave their tools behind. Little do they know just how devastating that can be to our marine wildlife. I love all of your photos from that day, very well captured!

  5. Trigg says:

    You are right, people are not that informed. Unless you get out and see for yourself. I liked that you added the high tourism and activity level there is around the Harbor.

  6. Matt Wells says:

    Definitely awesome to see how many people come out to do a beach clean up. The variety of people who love the ocean and our beaches is really observable when hundreds of people come together to volunteer to pick up trash. It is unfortunate we do have to however have to do beach clean ups, it would be nice if people just cleaned up after themselves and took care of their trash.

  7. Micaela says:

    I had never thought about the motives of the the people going to volunteer at beach cleanups such as this one. It’s really interesting how you pointed out some of the main reasons why people actually go to volunteer and the reaction on their faces that you noticed after the actual cleanup. Hopefully they do take the experience and use it in their everyday lives whenever they visit a beach or anywhere else and help keep that place clean.

  8. Ferrel says:

    I think you make a good point about how many people are not informed about trash build up. I always new trash build up was a problem in our beaches but I never knew how bad it really was until the clean up day. Also I really like your pictures!

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