More than 70 Purchase students turned out at a Long Island Sound beach in Rye, NY, this weekend to participate in the 26th annual Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup. The students, along with environmental sciences faculty members Susan Letcher and Jeff Main, spent the day, not only hunting for and picking up trash and debris, but also recording everything they found and where they found it.
Over the past 25 years, the International Coastal Cleanup has become the world’s largest volunteer effort for ocean health. Nearly nine million volunteers from 152 countries and locations have cleaned 145 million pounds of trash from the shores of lakes, streams, rivers, and the ocean on just one day each year. They have recorded every item found, providing a clear picture of the manufactured items impacting the health of humans, wildlife, and economies.