Manzanita, OR. An estimated 5,000 people kicked off Earth Month on April 1st by volunteering with SOLVE to clean up Oregon’s beaches from Astoria to Brookings. The 32nd annual SOLVE Spring Oregon Beach Cleanup focused on 45 beaches. One big find at the Beverly Beach Cleanup was 50 lbs. of rope. This year’s event also marks the 50th Anniversary of the Oregon Beach Bill, which granted public recreational access to beaches along all 362 miles of coastline. Organizers are still gathering information, but last year volunteers removed 93,400 pounds of litter and marine debris and recycled over 2,000 pounds of debris to be turned into educational art sculptures.

 

Volunteers were out in force in Manzanita. Over the past 30 years, more than 130,000 Spring Oregon Beach Cleanup volunteers have removed an estimated 1.9 million pounds of litter from Oregon’s beaches.

Organizers told volunteers like this Manzanita family that even the smallest bits of trash can be harmful. For example, cigarette butts flow into storm drains, then directly to our streams, rivers, and ocean. The chemicals they retain are released as they flow downstream to the ocean. Just as troubling, cigarette butts, tiny bits of plastic, and other trash are readily eaten by marine life. If we eat seafood, we may also ingest these contaminants.

These volunteers were helping to clean up the beach in Seaside.

Volunteers filled up a dumpster with trash in Seaside.

Here is one of the crews working in Cannon Beach.

From SOLVE:

SOLVE is a state-wide non-profit organization that takes action every day to keep Oregon clean and green. We mobilize over 35,000 volunteers and organize over 1,000 cleanup and restoration projects throughout the state. Our mission: Bring Oregonians together to improve our environment and build a legacy of stewardship.

The next big event for SOLVE will be Earth Day on April 22nd.

As the number of people visiting and moving to our beautiful state continues to grow, it has become more important than ever to keep it clean and healthy! Let’s come together to make this Earth Day the largest ever, picking up litter, removing invasive plants, and planting native trees and shrubs across Oregon. Together we can make sure Oregon can remain the amazing place we all love.

The idea of people coming together on Earth Day to take care of and celebrate our planet began more than 45 years ago and was a perfect fit for SOLVE and our volunteers. In 1990, SOLVE IT for Earth Day took root in the Greater Portland-Metro area, fusing our hands-on approach with this worldwide day of service. Since then, SOLVE IT for Earth Day has grown into Oregon’s largest Earth Day service event.

Over the past 27 years more than 112,000 volunteers have removed 15 million pounds of litter and invasive plants from illegal dumpsites, neighborhoods, and natural areas as part of this global event.

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