Coastal Cleanup Day Will Mobilize Thousands to Clean Local Beaches

Santa Barbara: Become part of the solution to ocean pollution on Coastal Cleanup Day, Saturday, September 18th, from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. An international day of volunteer action, Coastal Cleanup Day offers community members a chance to give back to their favorite beach, park, or creek. With more than 27 sites from Carpinteria to Guadalupe, Coastal Cleanup Day unites our community for a common cause – clean beaches!

“It’s really exciting that Coastal Cleanup Day is back this year! So many people look forward to getting together with family and friends and volunteering. We really missed seeing everyone last year and hope to see you in person on the 18th at the site of your choice!” says Jill Cloutier, Explore Ecology’s PR Director. “It’s super fun and rewarding to get outside, enjoy nature, and make a difference.”

Coastal Cleanup is California’s largest volunteer event. Volunteers of all ages can participate at any of the 2021 cleanup sites. Pre-registration is not required, but is encouraged. For more information and to sign up, visit ExploreEcology/

Each site will have a Site Captain who will provide necessary instructions and supplies. Explore Ecology is encouraging volunteers to BYO- bring your own reusable gloves, bags or buckets, and water bottles to reduce waste and decrease the cleanup’s plastic footprint.
Emma Roggenkamp, Watershed Resource Center Intern says, “California’s Coastal Cleanup Day is a statewide, grassroots effort to keep our beaches free from plastic and other debris. After this quarantine year, I’m so excited to get outside with everybody and double our efforts to keep the spaces we love beautiful and safe for all.” 

Volunteers can become citizen scientists by installing the Clean Swell app on their phones and using the app to record the trash they collect on Coastal Cleanup Day. Clean Swell will instantaneously upload to the Ocean Conservancy’s global ocean trash database. These data deliver a global snapshot of ocean trash, providing researchers and policy-makers insight to inform solutions. Visit the Ocean Conservancy website to download the app. Volunteers who don’t use the app can record what they find on Data Sheets available at each site. There will also be a Google form for those who wish to enter their data online.  

Coastal Cleanup Day Site Captains will be at the following sites in Santa Barbara County:

Arroyo Burro Beach
Butterfly Beach
Campus Point
Carpinteria Creeks
Carpinteria State Beach
East Beach – 2 locations
El Capitan
Ellwood Beach
Gaviota State Beach
Goleta Beach
Guadalupe Dunes
Hammond’s Beach
Haskell’s Beach
Hazards/Lorraine’s Beach
Isla Vista Streets
Jelly Bowl Beach
Jalama Beach
Leadbetter Beach
Lookout Park
Refugio State Beach
Rincon County Beach (Bates)
San Jose Creek
Santa Claus Lane
Smugglers Cove (Channel Islands)- not open to the public
Tajiguas Beach
West Beach
Zanja De Cota Creek

Volunteers unable to attend the cleanup on the 18th are encouraged to cleanup any time during the month of September and their cleanup data will be included as part of Coastal Cleanup Day!

Research shows that 33% of shellfish, 25% of fish, and 67% of marine species in California contain plastics, primarily micro plastics. With statistics like these, it’s easy to feel hopeless about how much plastic litter is in the ocean. Participating in Coastal Cleanup Day is an effective way to make a difference and take a stand against marine debris!

Coastal Cleanup Day is administered statewide by the California Coastal Commission. In Santa Barbara County, the event is organized by Explore Ecology, with the support of the County of Santa Barbara Resource Recovery and Waste Management and the Cities of Santa Barbara and Goleta and with the help of many non-profits, businesses, and generous individuals. 

About Explore Ecology: Explore Ecology is an environmental education and arts nonprofit that educates over 38,000 children a year, inspiring them to engage with the natural world, think critically, and experience the value of environmental stewardship. Explore Ecology programs include the Art From Scrap Creative Reuse Store and Gallery, Watershed Resource Center, and School Gardens Program. For more information, visit

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