Keep beaches clean this summer

Get sand smart this summer and do your part to keep the beaches clean.

By Wendyl Nissen

As we head out to our beautiful beaches this year, why not take a bag with you, become a beachcomber and help the environment?

Picking up even just three pieces of rubbish every visit can have a significant impact on the wellbeing of marine animals and bird life.

It is estimated 18,000 pieces of plastic float in every square kilometre of the ocean – and marine debris affects 276 species worldwide.

This enters the ocean from seagoing vessels, offshore dumping, litter left behind on beaches and run-off from rivers and drainage systems.

Some plastic gets caught around marine life and birds, preventing them from moving or feeding. Plastic is also eaten by birds, as they mistake it for jellyfish, and it can even get fed to chicks after the parent regurgitates it.

Get into the habit of looking for rubbish while enjoying the beach and taking a bag or two home with you to be recycled. The best things to pick up are plastic, even tiny bits, because of the serious risks to wildlife.

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