Council Volunteers Help Stem the Tide of Rubbish
16 September 2011
Carrickfergus Borough Council staff and their families helped the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) fight marine litter by kick starting the Beachwatch Big Weekend on the Marine Highway Shoreline. Volunteers cleaned the beach of its litter and completed surveys, which will be sent back to the Marine Conservation Society allowing them to tackle marine litter at its source.
Stephen Daye, from Carrickfergus Borough Council said "Thousands of items of litter were lifted, from plastic bottles, drink cans and plastic bags. Other interesting finds included a tyre, fire extinguisher and items of clothing. Litter comes from four main sources: fishing, shipping, the public and sewage related debris (particularly cotton buds). Beach litter is continually washed ashore, making it a very difficult problem to eradicate, this is why the UK wide survey is so important!
"Last years Beachwatch Big Weekend revealed a shocking rise in the amount of bathroom rubbish found on UK beaches. Some householders are using their loos as bins and flushing away items. The amount of sewage related debris ending up on our shores shot up by 40%, according to the latest Beachwatch report published earlier this year. The results of the Marine Conservation Society's (MCS) Beachwatch Big Weekend will be published next spring." Concluded Mr. Daye
Beach litter is an increasing problem in Northern Ireland with approximately one item of litter being found per footstep on beaches. Amanda Wilson, the Marine Conservation Society organiser for the Marine Highway Shoreline said, "Some of our best loved marine wildlife is under threat from hazardous litter in our seas. Hundreds of species of marine wildlife accidentally eat, or become tangled up in litter - and it’s also hazardous to people. It’s great that Carrickfergus Borough Council is so keen to be involved with the work of MCS and have shown such enthusiasm for Beachwatch Big Weekend". For more information on events taking place throughout Northern Ireland visit www.mcsuk.org/beachwatch.
For further information please contact:
Stephen Daye, Parks & Countryside Development Officer
Telephone: 028 9335 8000