Sunday, June 30, 2013

MyBeach: keeping the Dutch beaches clean

You know me is a nice and well behaved monster. Although me have occasionally little hunger outbursts when me want a cookie, me is very civilized. My grandma taught me to always clean up after myself. Never let cookie wrappers unattended but throw them in trashcan. Me knows me makes Oscar very happy with old cookie wrappers too. But you don’t have to have a grouchy friend to clean up and throw away your trash.

Last Friday me went to the beach. The Netherlands have a long long coastline with lots of beaches and restaurants on the beach. It is wonderful to walk through the dunes or soak your feet in the cold dark blue water. Me loves the beach, the ocean wind playing with my fuzzy and blue fur, the sound of the seagulls shouting ‘mine, mine, mine’… But when you look closely you can see the beach is kind of polluted with trash from the ocean or other beach guests. This trash isn’t good for the environment of the land as well as the sea. Seamammals like seals and harbour porpoises can get choked by the nets or choke on plastic and pieces of balloons. And birds can get trapped in the nets and strings on the beach. And people can cut their feet on broken glass and sharp pieces of plastic or rusty nails. Time to clean up the beach!

MyBeach is an initiative of the Dutch organisation Stichting De Noordzee. They are all working to clean up the oceans and the beaches of the Netherlands, so the sea worldwide will be much cleaner. They also are working on decreasing the plastic soup! Its great work.

So, last Friday me went to the beach with Berry (because she calls that working…) to attend the opening of MyBeach. This project asks visitors of the beach to clean up after themselves, but also clean up trash they spot while visiting the beach. You can get special trashbags for the collecting the trash. And with a fun counter app (me thinks me friend Count von Count will love it) you can count everything you will collect. Berry found all kinds of strings and pieces of fishing nets, but also some rusty bottle caps (not from Bert’s collection) and nails, lots of candy wrappers, pieces of plastic and a rubber fisherman’s glove and the sticks of cotton swabs. Me was awed that after an hour of searching and collecting trash there was so many in the bags! So next time me go to the beach, me will pick up after myself and collect some more trash. It’s for a cleaner, healthier ocean!

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