A young helper picks up trash on the beach at a previous Coastal Clean-up Day.

A young helper picks up trash on the beach at a previous Coastal Clean-up Day. (Courtesy photo)

Coastal Clean-up Day is still on for 2020, although there have been some changes to help participants stay safe during COVID-19 while keeping the oceans clean.

Coastal Clean-Up Day is an annual event when communities worldwide come together to protect the coasts by cleaning up neighborhoods or natural areas.

This year, the city of Goleta is partnering with the Santa Barbara County, Explore Ecology, and other local jurisdictions, but instead of gathering at beaches and sites throughout the county on a single day, cleanups will happen in local neighborhoods and participants can use technology to collaborate.

Community members are urged to clean up their neighborhood or favorite open space, 9 a.m.-noon Saturdays in September. The dates are Sept. 5, 12, 19 and 26.

Cleanups by community members should be self-guided and close to home. Although there are local beach restrictions over Labor Day Weekend (Sept. 4-7), participants still can do coastal clean-up work as long as they keep moving, do not gather, and are working independently or with people from their own household.

In addition to beach activities, there are other options to participate in Coastal Clean-Up Day. Local parks, shores, creeks, streets, drainage areas, sidewalks, natural areas, and trails are among the choices.

Practice physical distancing and strictly follow local ordinances and the set of guidelines provided on the California Coastal Commission website to make this a safe cleanup for you and your community.
Also, the city of Goleta wants to see volunteers in action. Send in pictures of yourself participating in a Coastal Clean-Up activity. Email them to PIO@CityofGoleta.org with a short caption for a chance to be on the city’s Facebook (@CityofGoleta) page, Instagram (@cityofgoleta) page, and the city’s Environmental Services webpages.
There is a great new app that can help the city track how well it is doing as a community, and globally. Use the Clean Swell App to report the different kinds and amounts of trash you find. For other ways to submit your trash data, visit Explore Ecology’s website.

“During these unusual and challenging times, one thing we can all appreciate is the natural beauty of our coasts, creeks and open spaces,” said Charlie Ebeling, Goleta director of Public Works. “We are all incredibly lucky to have clean water, thriving habitats, and the ability to enjoy one of the most spectacular natural environments in the world.

“I am very excited to do my part to help protect our natural assets. Please join us any Saturday in September to help keep Goleta clean and beautiful,” Ebeling said.

“I am so excited to be a part of this event,” said Melissa Nelson, Goleta Environmental Services coordinator. “Every day I’m not only inspired by our exquisite natural surroundings, but by the dedicated community that protects them. Thank you for helping to Protect Your Happy Place.”
For more about guidance for neighborhood cleanups, including preparation, cleanup, and post cleanup visit https://www.goletamonarchpress.com/2020/08/coastal-cleanup-day-every-saturday-in-september/.