Coastweeks, or the International Coastal Cleanup is a nationwide effort coordinated
by The Ocean Conservancy and for the past 30 years, they have inspired millions of people to assist with the
cause for healthier seas. Each year, The Ocean Conservancy mobilizes communities to
help organize and participate in beach cleanups whilst recording/documenting data
such as what kinds of trash they pick up and how much. You can join the effort to
reduce marine debris from our coasts to help keep our islands clean! Contact us today to see how you can
Check out Coastweeks data from 2022! This is an excellent resource for educators!
Total Number of Volunteers
Total lbs of Trash Removed
Every piece of trash counts! In 2022, the most collected item was metal bottle
caps (6,534). Data such as this can help legislators make better, informed decisions
about which type of trash can be regulated through specific laws and programs.
Take a look at some photos from our past Coastweeks cleanups. This can help to give
you an idea of what to expect during a cleanup.
Coastweeks cleanups focus on both the removal of trash from our coastlines and also
the recording of specific data (what types of trash, how much, weight, location, etc.).
This data is helpful as it is used to support legislative action to combat the issue
of marine debris and plastic pollution.
Every tiny piece of trash counts during cleanups! Most beaches are littered with small
pieces of trash such as cigarette butts, bottle caps, straws, and plastic utensils.
While these trash items may be small in size, they are just as problematic as larger
improperly discarded trash items such as plastic bags and construction materials.
Cleanups can take place on land and underwater! Diving cleanups help to remove larger
trash items like this lawn chair that was trasnported into the waters of Coki Beach
after the 2017 Hurricane Irma.
Depending on the cleanup location, glass beverage bottles may be collected to support
our USVI Glass Recovery Program
. Through this effort, glass beverage bottles are pulverized back into sand and cullets
(essentially small gravel but made with glass) that are used for: 1) Filling of sandbags
, 2) Landscaping
, 3) Water filtration
, 4) Substrate for planting mangroves
, and 5) Concrete aggregate
Students that volunteer through Coastweeks can receive community service hours that
can count towards their graduation requirements. Another reason to volunteer at your
next cleanup; support a noteworthy cause to remove debris from our coastlines whilst
earning community service hours.
Resources for Educators Click on any of the items below to access these materials and begin using them in
Adapted from the NOAA Marine Debris Program
Created with Input from USVI Educators
Make a commitment to use less single-use plastics
Contact Us!Our team is happy to assist you!
Office Phone: St. Thomas (340) 693-1672 / St. Croix (340) 692-4046
E-mail: St. Thomas (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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Virgin Islands Marine Advisory Service
Center for Marine and Environmental Studies
University of the Virgin Islands