Keep Martin Beautiful & local volunteers to join in worldwide cleanup

Posted on August 4, 2016

PALM CITY, Fla. (CBS12)-- The 2016 International Coastal Cleanup is right around the corner and Keep Martin Beautiful is encouraging residents to join the community by taking action to help improve the quality of our beaches and waterways. With the current state of our waterways, it is important that we do all we can to keep our coastal areas litter and debris free.

Approximately 800,000 volunteers from more than 100 nations come together on a single day to participate in the waterway cleanup. For the past 30 years, the cleanup has been spearheaded globally by the Ocean Conservancy, and for the past 20 years has been coordinated locally by Keep Martin Beautiful. This year’s International Coastal Cleanup will take place on Saturday, September 17 from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

“Our volunteers who participate in this cleanup each year are community heroes. They are the guardians of our beaches, our parks and our waterways,” said Craig Ahal, KMB president. “The event gathers people from all walks of life, from schoolteachers and business owners to toddlers and senior citizens. Everyone unites on this day with a common goal in mind - to beautify our coastal areas and protect marine life from the dangers that debris poses. This event is so important and wouldn’t happen without the dedication and passion of our volunteers.”

Nearly a million people around the world to participate in global cleanup Sept 17

The cleanup efforts are a vital part of motivating people to do something tangible in their community - to remove trash from beaches and waterways. More importantly, the cleanup educates people to become aware of the problems associated with litter and challenges citizens to change the behaviors that cause the pollution in the first place. Last year, over 18 million pounds of litter and marine debris was collected from a more than 25,000 miles of shoreline around the world.

This year, the Ocean Conservancy has created a mobile app called Clean Swell™ to help with the International Coastal Cleanup efforts. “With the launch of our Clean Swell mobile app, I'm excited for these dedicated volunteers to be able to easily collect more robust data as we work to better understand marine debris and work to keep it off beaches and out of the ocean,” said Allison Schutes, senior manager of the Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas program. “With Clean Swell, individuals can join a global community working to add vital data to the world's largest marine debris database by logging the trash they find while at the beach quickly and easily on their mobiles. The database is used by scientists, conservation groups, governments and industry leaders to take actions and ensure trash never reaches the beach.”

Groups and individuals are welcome to join the cleanup effort at Stuart Beach, but Keep Martin Beautiful encourages volunteers to sign up in advance to clean the beach or waterway of their choice to ensure clean waterways all over Martin County. All participants are invited to attend a volunteer appreciation party at Stuart Beach from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. to thank volunteers, sponsors and community supporters. The event will feature food, drinks and family friendly activities.

Keep Martin Beautiful appreciates the generous sponsors and community supporters of the 2016 International Coastal Cleanup, which include: Amerisweeps; Ampersand Shirt Shack; Captec Engineering; The City of Stuart; Cook Electric Inc.; Florida Inland Navigation District; The Firefly Group; Jenkins Landscape; Kohl’s; Live with Grace; Martin County; Organic Laboratories Inc.; Rocky’s Ace Hardware; Sailor’s Return; Subway; Surfing’s Evolution & Preservation Foundation; Wallace Nissan; and Whiticar Boat Works.

What Volunteers Need to Know

• The International Coastal Cleanup targets waterways throughout Martin County, from Lake Okeechobee to the Atlantic Ocean and everything in between

• Pre-registration is highly recommended to ensure volunteers are assigned to areas most in need

• Volunteers who don’t pre-register can still join Keep Martin Beautiful at Stuart Beach on the morning of the cleanup

• The unique data gathering feature of this cleanup records every piece of litter collected

• Volunteers should wear closed-toed shoes

• Participants will be provided with water and cleanup supplies, as well as a complimentary T-shirt (while supplies last)

For more information about the 2016 International Coastal Cleanup, or to register your family, business, civic or school group, contact KMB at 772-781-1222 or

About Keep Martin Beautiful

Keep Martin Beautiful (KMB) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit community organization founded in 1994 as an affiliate of Keep America Beautiful. Its mission is to preserve and enhance the quality of life in Martin County through litter prevention, the promotion of recycling, improvement of solid waste management practices, and beautification and community revitalization activities. KMB signature events and programs include the annual Environmental Stewardship Awards, the International Coastal Cleanup, the Great American Cleanup, the Adopt-A-Road and Adopt-A-Street programs, and other educational and outreach activities. Find KMB on Facebook at, follow KMB on Twitter at, visit or call 772-781-1222


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