Surfers Against Sewage’s intrepid army of volunteers descended on the beaches and waterways across the UK for the biggest Autumn Beach and River Clean ever in their history.
As the weather changed, and the nights began to draw in, this mass community mobilisation answered the call issued by SAS in light of the plastic pollution found on our shorelines. The pollution had been worsened by recent storms.
Over 21,200 volunteers of all ages took part in cleans at over 487 beaches, river banks and lakes across the UK to remove a staggering 35.9 tonnes of marine plastic pollution, the equivalent of 8,991 full bin bags.
SAS’s director of campaigns and projects, Ben Hewitt said: “We can make sure we don’t choke our streets, parks and playgrounds with plastic pollution. If it’s on our street today, then it’s in our rivers tomorrow, and our beaches and oceans forever.
"We can make sure each of us understands that we can change this, whoever we are and wherever we live. But we can only do all of this together.
"We’re part of a community network across the UK that’s tackling single-use plastic from the beach, all the way back to the brands and businesses who create it.
“Thanks to the surge in awareness around plastic pollution, we were able to call on communities across the UK and were absolutely blown away by the response.
"These Citizen Scientists donated more than 73,454 volunteer hours. They also helped us collect a data set that will form an integral part of our campaign for new plastic bottle Deposit Return Scheme in the UK”
This article is based on a press release from Surfers Against Sewage. The beach clean series was organised by Surfers against Sewage and supported by partners; Greggs, The Environment Agency, British Canoeing, Ecover, Parley For The Oceans, REN Skincare, Surfing England and WSL Pure.