A call is going out for groups to sign up for a big community spring clean of Tasman Bay beaches being run for the second year.

A call is going out for groups to sign up for a big community spring clean of Tasman Bay beaches being run for the second year.

Last year more than 950 volunteers collected 10.4 tonnes of rubbish from a staggering 291 kilometres of beach between Cable Bay and Abel Tasman.

The Department of Conservation in partnership with Nelson City Council, Tasman District Council and NELMAC Ltd is running the second Big Beach Clean-up on Saturday 19 November 2011.

Many groups who participated last year had such a great time they have already signed up to clean the same stretch of coast this year, with around 30 of 50 coastal sections already claimed.

Nelson and Tasman Mayors Aldo Miccio and Richard Kempthorne applaud the initiative and say:

“It’s a great way for the community to show they care about the environment. Last year’s effort was outstanding and clubs, groups and businesses are encouraged to get organised and get involved.”

Groups can find out more by visiting Big beach clean-up where they can also register to clean a section of beach and get information on how to get mobilised.  The 50 coastal sections to be cleaned are of varying lengths and ranked easy, medium and difficult in terms of the ease of access and the terrain. Groups are invited to sign up to clean a section suited to the size of their group and capability of their members.

DOC Motueka Community Relations Programme Manager Rudy Tetteroo said the Big Beach Clean-up aimed to tidy the beaches in time for summer and make them safer for coastal wildlife.

“Sadly much of the rubbish found washed up on our beaches was swept down our rivers or was thrown from passing vehicles. Plastic bags and bottles are especially harmful for marine mammals which can swallow smaller items mistaking them as food. Litter should be recycled, reused or properly disposed of in rubbish bins or with household rubbish.” 

Rudy said those who took part last year included social, sports, youth and family groups. Some businesses used the event for team-building.

“Many participants reported they had a great time exploring new places for the first time.”

With low tide at 10 am on 19 November, groups are recommended to clean their coastal sections in the morning to pick up rubbish below the high tide mark. In the event of bad weather, the event will be postponed until the following day, Sunday 20 November.

“Just Call My Name and I’ll Be There” (Myriah Carey)

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