The 2021 International Coastal Cleanup is a success in Puerto Peñasco
By: CEDO Intercultural | Cover photo: CEDO Archive
More than 600 people of Puerto Peñasco, including 57 governmental and educational institutions, civil society organizations, private companies, fishers, families, and volunteers participated in the cleanup, collecting 3 tons of waste at 23 cleanup sites along the coastline.
The waste analysis showed that of the 13,115 pieces of waste collected and registered on the Clean Swell platform, 18% were cigarette butts, 10% percent were plastic bottles, and 9% were metal caps.
Caps, bottles, bags, wrappers, and pieces of plastic, as well as metal cans were also part of the waste found at Islas del Mar, Estero La Cholla, Bajada de Los Guardado, Dársena, Bajada de las pangas, Malecón Fundadores, Manny´ s Beach Club, Front of Pitahaya Bar, Mi Playa, CEDO in Las Conchas, Tessoro, Estero Morúa, Kivoya-Encanto Living, Las Palmas, Las Palomas, Luna Blanca, Sonoran Sea, Bella Sirena, Sonoran Sun, Private Door, Playa Dorada and the Reef Camping Area.
The Clean Swell application was used to quantify and analyze the type of waste found on the beaches of the Northern Gulf. The data of beach cleanups around the world is uploaded to the platform and made available to the public (coastalcleanupdata.org).
Events such as the International Coastal Cleanup are very important, not only because they get rid of part of the waste found at each beach, but also because they allow the public to learn about the types of waste that is found and to develop strategies that promote waste reduction.
In Puerto Peñasco, for example, the data collected at the beach cleanups has been used to design, among other things, the Beach Use Regulation and the Solid Waste Management Program for Sandy Beach, which has been certified as a Clean Beach.
On the other hand, engaging communities in this type of actions leads to a sense of belonging and a reevaluation of the inhabited space, in addition to collaborations between different sectors, raising awareness of socio-environmental problems, and discovering that community members themselves are part of the solution.
Plastic production is growing exponentially and much of the plastic waste finds its way into the ocean. Plastic takes hundreds of years to decompose and absorbs toxic chemicals that are extremely harmful to marine species. Almost a third of sea turtles and about half of seabird species will ingest plastics at some point in their life cycle. This is potentially fatal and it’s important to remedy it effectively.