Volunteers from Brown Thomas removed 31kg of marine litter from Garretstown Beach.

Volunteerscleaned up for World Ocean Day

Thousands of volunteers in Cork have answered a call to tackle marine litter this month to mark World Ocean Day.

Last May, Irish environmental charity Clean Coasts joined forces with National Spring Clean to provide communities with free clean-up kits.

The kits will be used in more than 30 beach clean-ups planned in Cork this week to coincide with World Ocean Day, which is celebrated annually on 8 June.

This year, the focus will once again be on the 30x30 campaign, to create a healthy ocean with abundant wildlife. The campaign’s main objective is to stabilize the climate by protecting 30% of the planet’s lands, waters and ocean by 2030.

According to Irish environmental charity An Taisce, statistics show that most of the marine litter originates from litter dropped in towns and cities.

The National Spring Clean programme joins forces with Clean Coasts on the back of a hugely successful Spring Clean 22 campaign which took place in April. The campaign saw 500,000 volunteers organise over 5,600 clean-ups around Ireland.

Sinead McCoy, Coastal Communities Manager, An Taisce, said: “We were so overwhelmed with the support received from the public. In under 72 hours over 230 clean-ups had already registered on the Clean Coasts website.”

In Cork county, more than 30 clean-ups are set to happen this week, which will see over 400 volunteers getting involved.

To celebrate World Ocean Day and following the launch of 2 marine biodiversity directories last month, Clean Coasts has also issued a 4th Enjoy and Protect guide about wildlife photography.

In 2021, the initiative changed its name from World Oceans Day to World Ocean Day. By dropping the ‘s’, organisers wanted to highlight the fact that everyone is connected by a large ocean.

An Taisce said in a statement: “This shared ocean supports all life on the planet by producing most of the oxygen we breathe and regulating climate. No matter where we live, we all depend on the ocean to survive. This means that each piece of marine litter removed from a beach, river, lake, park or street in Ireland, will have a positive impact on a global scale.”