Our latest beach clean was a collaborative effort between Planet PK and Cornwall AONB to clean up the Bank Holiday litter! Starting at 9 am, staff members of PK Porthcurno as well as helping hands from the team at Cornwall AONB kicked off this month’s beach clean. Soon joined by residents and conscientious members of the public, we had a team of around 20 people tackling the bank holiday litter!
Take your BBQ’s Home!
Although at first seeming remarkably clean and quiet, we soon discovered several concerning bits of litter hidden behind rocks and partially buried in the sand. Among these were several disposable and non-disposable BBQs.
Disposable BBQs are particularly bad as they pose significant dangers to wildlife and other beachgoers. Weathered and worn over time, the sharp edges of the metal can pierce the feet of unsuspecting visitors as well as injure animals foraging for food. Not only that, when they’re hot and left on the beach, they can burn the feet of people who step on them without noticing! If taking a disposable BBQ to the beach it’s best to leave enough time for it to cool down before you leave, then you can dispose of it in a provided bin or take it home with you and dispose of it there!
We Found a Tent!
Other notable litter discoveries made were an entire tent and camping chair! The tent was obviously broken as we ourselves had trouble trying to flat pack it into its bag, so we can see why it would be a pain to drag home! However, the environmental impact it can have if it washes into the sea is far worse than the annoyance of dragging it off the beach and to the nearest bin. Tents and tent poles are largely made of plastic which we all know has devastating effects on wildlife, entering the marine food chain and eventually our food chain in the seafood that many of us eat.
Whatever we leave on the beach, whether it’s a large tent, or a tiny cigarette butt containing thousands of microplastics, it all has an effect on the wildlife around us but also has a direct impact on us humans and our health. Studies have shown that the ingestion of microplastics in humans can increase the risk of cancer, disruption of certain hormones, and inflammation amongst other issues.
A Big Thank You!
Thank you so much to everyone who turned up for this beach clean, and everyone who’s turned up for our beach cleans in the past! It was amazing to see the number of people who love our local wildlife and want to protect it just as much as we do. We hope to see you soon with another one!
Header Photo: Maeve Cushla