San Juan Capistrano’s Descanso Park will be among 40 Orange County sites that will get cleaned up on Sept. 15 for Coastal Cleanup Day, an annual event dedicated to removing trash and debris from beaches and waterways.

Registration is currently open for the event, which sees thousands of volunteers per years.

More than 7,000 Orange County volunteers collected a record-breaking 70,485 pounds of trash and recyclable materials during last year’s three-hour event, according to a news release from nonprofit, Orange County Coastkeeper. The organization is one of the entities that helps organize the event.

The release notes that Orange County beaches and waterways collect trash that travels from Inland communities through the county’s rivers and storm drains. It says beach cleanup days “stand as the last line of defense,” keeping debris from polluting the ocean and impacting its wildlife.

“Most people are unaware that nearly 80 percent of trash found on beaches comes from inland sources,” stated Patrick Irizarry, Orange County Coastkeeper’s volunteer coordinator. “At Coastal Cleanup Day, thousands of residents will get an up-close look at how everyday trash impacts our environment.”

Descanso Park, one of the clean up sites, is located between Trabuco Creek and San Juan Creek.

The Orange County iteration of the event is part of the larger California Coastal Cleanup Day, which is organized by the California Coastal Commission. The statewide event is part of the Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup.

The event is free and supplies will be provided. However, Coastkeeper is asking volunteers to bring their own cleanup supplies, including buckets, gloves, reusable bags and reusable water bottles to have a “low-waste event.”

To register for Coastal Cleanup Day or find a local clean-up site, visit www.coastkeeper.org. For more information, contact Patrick Irizarry at patrick@coastkeeper.org.

 

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