‘Big Beach Clean’ removes 43 tons of rubbish from shores

More than 400 beach clean-ups take place over the weekend

More than 400 beach clean-ups took place over the weekend. File photograph: iStock

More than 400 beach clean-ups took place over the weekend. File photograph: iStock

 

More than 400 beach clean-ups took place over the weekend removing 43 tonnes of rubbish form the State’s shores.

The Big Beach Clean is an annual call to action that takes place in September at the end of the swimming season. Volunteers around Ireland were asked to register their clean-up event and take part in a worldwide citizen science project, as part of the International Coastal Cleanup, operated internationally by Ocean Conservancy.

Organiser Sinead McCoy said after a break in 2020 due to Covid there was a significant increase in clean-ups organised: “This year, there was an over 5 per cent decrease in litter found across Ireland. Overall this is an incredible improvement.

“The work that Irish volunteers do all year round to tackle litter and less waste dropped by more conscious beach users mean that we are heading in the right direction,” she said.

Clean Coasts is a charity programme, run by the Environmental Education Unit of An Taisce, which engages communities in the protection of Ireland’s beaches, seas and marine life.

Clean Coasts includes two main national clean-up drives, the Green Coast Award, the Love Your Coast Photography competition, the Clean Coasts Roadshows for coastal communities and the Ocean Hero Awards.