Beach Debris Documented By Littoral Society
Hundreds of volunteers from school, civic and environmental organizations came out in force to clean and document beach debris as part of the annual NYS Coastal Cleanup sponsored by the American Littoral Society. In Rockaway, school groups included students from Kappa VI school at Far Rockaway High School and Channel View School For Research on Beach Channel Drive at Beach 98 Street. The Kappa students cleaned the Far Rockaway shoreline between Beach 25 and Beach 30 Streets; the Channel View students cleaned the shores of the new Beach 88 Street park on the bayside with help from volunteer Vivian Carter and teachers Kathleen MacDonald, M. Penteck, B. Mannion and L. Dimino.
In Broad Channel, teacher Deborah Williams and 24 students from P.S. 47 removed about 400 pounds of plastic, Styrofoam, cans, fishing line and glass bottles from the Ballfield Park shoreline (metal cans and glass/plastic bottles were recycled). In Breezy Point, near the Rocky Point Yacht Club, Shervin Hess and a dozen volunteers pulled out about 1,000 pounds of wood and heavy debris that was impacting the marsh.
At Plum Beach on the Jamaica Bay shoreline, Tod Winston of NYC Audubon brought 75 volunteers by bus and they removed over 1, 200 pounds from the beachfront, dunes and marsh areas. All the information collected will be sent to the Ocean Conservancy in Washington, D.C. where it will be included in a compendium of results from all coastal states. “There was a record turnout this year due to the recent nice weather and increased interest in the event,“ said Don Riepe, the director of the society’s Northeast Chapter. “This is a grass roots effort to focus attention on beach debris and it has grown into a statewide campaign. Last year over 320 sites were cleaned.“ The organizers of the cleanup thank the National Park Service staff at Gateway who provided the pickup of debris from NPS sites and took it to the NYC Department of Sanitation which removed this additional debris from NYC park sites. For information on beach cleanups and results check the website: www.alsnyc.org.