Fireworks and a barbeque on the 4th of July are as American as it gets (ok, maybe you’ll have to add an apple pie, but still). And while the celebrations are always fun, what is left behind afterwards is anything but.
I was reminded of this by Raul Colon’s blog post yesterday on the trashy wakeup call this morning in the beaches of Puerto Rico. Unfortunately, the littering is not limited to the beach, but even then some of that trash finds its way to the beaches and oceans. From there it can get into the marine food chain, choking and trapping wildlife. On top of that it piles up into what is now the world’s largest landfill – the Pacific garbage patch.
Worse yet, we trash our beaches year-round, leaving everyday items on the shore to the tune of millions of cigarette butts and food wrappers, plastic bottles, single use bags, cans, paper and even mattresses!
Thankfully, there are efforts underway around the world to reverse course, from single-use plastic bag bans to organized beach clean-ups and more importantly, individual citizen actions like Raul’s, calling attention to specific instances of littering and proposing solutions. I’ll happily join in. As we start the summer, I’m hoping you all enjoy a safe and fun sunny season, doing your best to keep the beaches clean. I’m also hoping you’ll join Azul and more than 500,000 volunteers worldwide on September 21 for the International Coastal Cleanup Day, because as you well know – ¡En el mar, la vida es mas sabrosa!