We've missed Trash Bashes! Despite the hurdles that 2020 has thrown at us, we are very pleased that we were finally able to safely head to Milnerton Beach for another Trash Bash beach cleanup.
We knew that this would be a very different Trash Bash - no shared clipboards for data collection, no large group photo at the end, no huddle for a team briefing before we began - but that's okay, because our purpose remained the same: Help rid the environment of plastic waste, create awareness and have a great time outdoors in the process.
Our partner for this Trash Bash was Cape Union Mart, who provided our trashbashers with the chance to win a K-Way Eco Jacket valued at R1599! Congratulations Naomi D!
87 volunteer beachcombers tackled some high winds to track down an enormous amount of polystyrene foam that was littering Milnerton Beach, as well as head into the dunes to collect the straws, cigarette butts and bottles left behind by those without enough care to clean up after themselves.
A common question that came up was just where all the tiny bits of foam, earbuds and drinking straws could have come from. Although improperly discarded plastic on land is the root of this problem, we could quite clearly see untreated wastewater from Milnerton Lagoon being washed towards this beach - and with that, all the litter that ends up in local stormwater drains. It's truly a pity to think that this wonderful environment that we can freely share with each other and with nature is being so tainted by both the misuse of disposable plastic by individuals and mismanagement of our wastewater.
Despite the plastic particles being so light and small, 104.5kg of waste was collected and bagged - which is pretty good!
We are also glad about the conversations started around where this waste comes from. Despite not handing out clipboards to collect Dirty Dozen data for the Beach Co-Op and for UCT, as is usually the case at Trash Bashes, attendees were all encouraged to make use of the Marine Debris Tracker app. By logging their finds as part of The Beach Co-op's list, we are still able to provide this data.
We'd like to offer a huge THANK YOU you everyone that took part! We will definitely be doing more Trash Bashes, so keep an eye on the events on our Facebook page, or sign up for the Aquarium's newsletter to always stay informed.