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Coastal Cleanup at Malibu Lagoon: 20 September, 2014

September 30, 2014

This was our first cleanup since the Lagoon reconfiguration project began in 2012.

Setting up (L.Johnson 9/20/14)

Setting up (L.Johnson 9/20/14)

My impression is that  significant trash around the water’s edge was far less common than before. With the old channels, there were many spots where tiny pieces of plastic and styrofoam piled up. The west end of the south channel near the “mystery drain” outlet was especially bad – you could spend the entire three hour period trying to collect and count the crud, and still not get it all. But no more. The parking lot had the most trash; apparently when people exit their cars the piles of cigarette butts, candy wrappers, drink containers, burger boxes and miscellaneous detritus which accumulated on their laps while they drove, now tumbles out onto the ground and blows into the bushes. Who could have guessed?

We had 209 volunteers, which is a lot for this site. Many were individual people and families, but several organized groups showed up:
A Boy Scout Troop
Disney Corporation
El Camino Real Charter School of Woodland Hills – Humanitas Group: Dean Sodek, Teacher
Windward School of Mar Vista
Special thanks to the young men of El Camino School who hauled the trash and heavy lumber to the dumpster so the old geezers didn’t have to.

A line of pickers heads for the lagoon (L.Johnson 9/20/14)

A line of trash-pickers heads for the lagoon (L.Johnson 9/20/14)

Six Santa Monica Bay Audubon Society volunteers ran the whole thing:
Captain Jean, Co-Captain  Ellen, Weighmaster Chris, Lillian Mistress of Waivers, Jill-of-All-Trades Liz, and Trashmaster Chuck, Scourge of the Brush – are we pros or what ?
Some stats:
Total weight of trash = 760 lbs.
Total weight of recyclables = 11 lbs.
We found very few plastic bags (hooray – the ban just might be working ) and many many hundreds of cigarette butts (boo – isn’t smoking illegal at the beach?)

Chris deals with weighty matters (L.Johnson 9/20/14)

Chris deals with weighty matters (L.Johnson 9/20/14)

For Los Angeles County, Heal the Bay reports for 2014:
11,155 Volunteers at 49 locations
30,480 lbs. of debris (28,481 lbs. trash + 999 lbs. recyclables)
42.5 miles of coastline and river edge covered.
Over the past twenty-five years, Angelinos have picked up more than 1.7 million pounds of trash. Way to go!
Now, if we could only stop tossing it out there in the first place.
[Chuck Almdale]

Yours truly fills out the data card, his giant Bucket O' Butts always close at hand. (L.Johnson 9/20/14)

Yours truly fills out the data card, his Giant Bucket O’ Butts always at hand.
(L.Johnson 9/20/14)


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