Belmont thinks globally, acts locally on Coastal Cleanup Day

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Audrey Boyce

Coastal Cleanup members look over a map of the clean up site.

Coastal Cleanup Day celebrates its 30th anniversary, bringing together community members to clean up their local beaches, parks, creeks, or rivers. Coincidentally, this year’s Coastal Cleanup Day took place during Climate Week; a week focused on accelerating climate action.

Twin Pines park was the drop off location for all the waste collected in San Mateo County as well as a cleanup spot itself. There were over 40 Coastal Cleanup sites throughout the Peninsula.

“The goal of the event is to go to different locations and pick up trash to try to make sure it doesn’t make its way into water-ways that get into the Bay or the ocean,” said Julie Fradis, the administrative assistant for Public Works.

People ventured up and down the creek, trash bags in hand, while others looked around buildings and the playground. 

“A lot of what we have been finding is plastic, cans, and boxes of matches,” said Annol Gulati, a volunteer at the event.

Melissa Damon, a member of the San Carlos Eaton Hill 4-H club, attended the event for a service project.

“It is interesting to see how much we can get done in 3 hours. It looks like people are doing a good job because the park is pretty clean as far as I can tell,” Damon said.

Additionally, when all the trash is tallied, the event provides information and data outcomes to the county and state. 

“The type of trash we pick up is important to record so we can know what kind of trash is being put into our water streams, and then we can target outreach campaigns to people and hopefully reduce it,” said Alvarez, the City Engineer for Belmont.

The tallies are also an indicator of whether the Public Works campaigns are making a difference based on the increase or decrease of litter over the years.

“Every year, we get more people as we get the word out more. I think it is a great community event, and it is great that so many people are participating, and I hope to see more and more in the future,” Alvarez said.

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