On Sunday 6th August, the Dr. Bronner’s UK team and some friends and family headed to the East Sussex coast, volunteering on a regular beach clean carried out by the Captain Paul Watson Foundation.
Formerly known as SeaShepherd UK, the Paul Watson Foundation was established to promote and further the legacy of Captain Paul Watson, to focus on the protection and conservation of the Ocean through direct intervention supported by education, documentation, research activities and partnerships with other NGOs, governments, and international institutions like the United Nations.
The day we attended the beach clean, we were lucky enough to have glorious weather, as there had been a bad storm the day before. Due to this there were sadly a few large dog fish that had been washed ashore due to rough waters, highlighting how natural causes can be devastating to ocean life, so by preventing further human damage, we can make the oceans a much safer place for wildlife.
After meeting with Ellie from the CPWF and the rest of the beach cleaning volunteers, we were given a safety brief and instructions on what to look out for and pick up. Whilst the beach initially looked clean, it didn’t take long to notice small plastics and unusual objects you shouldn’t be able to find at a beach. Plastic forks, rope, disposable barbeques and strangely a few golf balls despite the nearest course being miles away.
The Dr. Bronner’s team were shocked at just how much rubbish there was on a beach that isn’t even popular for day-to-day recreation. It goes to show that all beaches need to be kept tidy, as strong currents drag up rubbish from more popular beaches close by, demonstrating just how easy it is for plastic and other rubbish to pollute even the most remote of locations.
Once we had spent a couple of hours filling our sacks of rubbish, the CPWF team would then sort through the rubbish, deciding what could then be recycled, and what would have to be disposed of safely, to ensure it wouldn’t make its way back into the ocean.
Top tips we learned from the beach clean:
- Always stay at least 5 meters away from the water.
- If there’s a large group of you, make sure everyone is accounted for after the clean
- Check tide times to make sure parts of the beach you’re cleaning don’t get cut off.
- Always wear gloves, and do not touch any deceased animals in case of infection.
- Not sure what to pick up? Go by the rule of, if you wouldn’t expect it on a beach, then pick it up!
- Always sort through the litter after and ensure whatever can be recycled is disposed of properly.
Dr. Bronner’s is a family business committed to honouring the vision of our founder Dr. E.H. Bronner by making socially and environmentally responsible products of the highest quality, and by dedicating our profits to helping make a better world. “All-One!”