The Two Oceans Aquarium will be launching its “Trash Bash” beach cleanup on Sunset Beach, Blouberg. The clean up will be at 9am – 11am on the March 21.

The oceans are facing a plastic catastrophe that is completely man-made. It is estimated that by the year 2050, there will be more plastic, by weight, in the ocean than fish. Join the Trash Bash to make a difference and clean up your cat. Plastic has permeated into the deepest recesses of the natural world and have even affected our food sources. Every year, a shocking amount of sea animals die because they have ingested plastic.

Plastic is not biodegradable, nor does it become part of the natural system again. Plastic breaks up until it is small enough to be ingested by fish, and research has shown that even plankton is mistaking plastic for food.

The question is: What can we do to stop plastic from polluting our oceans? Eighty percent of litter found in oceans originates from land, and the only way to intervene in the pollution cycle is to clean the land up to prevent the plastic from entering the oceans in the first place.

The Two Oceans Aquarium has been a long-standing participant of International Coastal Cleanup Day each September, and the Trash Bash campaign will host quarterly beach clean ups in an effort to entrench them into Cape Town’s culture.

Trash Bash cleanups will be hosted on the following dates:

21 March – 9am to 11am (Public holiday)
9 June – time to be confirmed
15 September – time to be confirmed
8 December – time to be confirmed

The cleanups will take place at Sunset Beach in Blouberg. The Dirty Dozen approach will be used, involving the the attendees working together in groups and recording everything collected. Specific attention will be paid to pre-selected items such as plastic bags, earbud sticks and sweet wrappers. Each group will have a scribe who writes down everything that has been collected. At the end of each cleanup, the data will be collated and will be used to contribute to research into tracking down the different sources of marine litter.

Everyone who wishes to attend the cleanups are asked to bring along their own water (in reusable bottles) as well as reusable gloves, and to wear sunscreen and a hat.

“Cleaning up isn’t just good for the environment, it is also good for those taking part. It leaves participants feeling that they are making a difference, playing their part and being responsible for something as fragile, yet incredibly important as the ocean.  The outcome of these cleanups is often much bigger than just a cleaner beach, as it changes people’s view of their role within the environment and instils a sense of responsibility towards their surrounds. Cleanups also get us outdoors and to appreciate the beauty of our surrounds ” said Helen Lockhart, Communications and Sustainability Manager for the Two Oceans Aquarium.

For more information, visit www.aquarium.co.za or email [email protected]

Article written by

Lucinda Dordley

Lucinda is a hard news writer who occasionally dabbles in lifestyle writing, and recent journalism graduate. She is a proud intersectional feminist, and is passionate about actively creating a world which is free of discrimination and inequality.