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Pasco County’s Coastal Cleanup Returns Sept. 18

By Florida's Original NatureCoaster™ Posted on August 11, 2021

The past year with Covid-19 has changed a lot of things.  Unfortunately, there is still litter and the need for cleanups.  Keep Pasco Beautiful has continued to have cleanups through the pandemic, focusing on smaller groups.  Hopefully with more people getting vaccinated these cleanups will continue to grow.  

The annual International Coastal Cleanup presented by the Rotary Club of New Port Richey will be held throughout Pasco County on Saturday, September 18, 2021.  Cleanups typically take place from 8 am to 12 pm, but this can vary depending on the site. 

The main focus in 2020 was smaller cleanups that would more easily facilitate social distancing. Volunteers were encouraged to find a public area in their community that needed to be cleaned and recruit a small number of volunteers to assist.  This resulted in more sites participating than ever before, with 36 locations!  There were 922 volunteers that worked for 3,248 hours picking up 19.52 tons of trash.  The cost-benefit of volunteer hours was $80,972.64.

Pasco County’s Coastal Cleanup Returns Sept. 18

The local cleanups, mobilized by Ocean Conservancy, are part of the largest worldwide volunteer effort on behalf of ocean health. Their purpose is to clean up and track the trash collected.

More than 8 million metric tons of plastic trash ends up in our oceans every year.  Since 1986, the International Coastal Cleanup has captured more than 334 million pounds of trash through the efforts of over 16 million volunteers.

“A huge thank you to all of our sponsors. We would not be able to do the cleanups without them.  Through their sponsorship dollars, we were able to supply volunteers with trash bags, gloves, t-shirts, and trash pickers,” says Kristen King, Keep Pasco Beautiful Coordinator. 

Best Practices when participating in Coastal Cleanups

  • When participating in a cleanup it is important to wear old sturdy shoes – sneakers, rubber boots, or work boots are all good options.  Although Floridians love their flip-flops, they are not a good idea for a cleanup. 
  • The sun can be intense so apply sunscreen, wear a hat, and bring lots of water for hydration. 
  • Grass and mangroves can have all sorts of flying critters that like to chew a bit so utilize bug spray so you don’t have to worry about slapping yourself with trashy hands.

The International Coastal Cleanup in Pasco County always takes place on the third Saturday in September.  

Keep Pasco Beautiful is always looking for captains that are interested in coordinating new locations.  If you are interested in being a captain email [email protected].  Click here to register as a volunteer.   Registration will close on September 10, 2021, in order to provide time to distribute supplies.

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