Keeping our beaches beautiful

There has been huge coverage in the news about the waste problems which are polluting our planet. Plastic pollution is one of the more worrying issues, especially with the news about what it is doing to our beaches and oceans.

According to reports, every day approximately 8 million pieces of plastic pollution find their way into our waters, 5,000 items of marine plastic pollution have been found per mile of beach in the UK and over 150 plastic bottles litter each mile of UK beaches.

So, with 79% of all plastic ever created still existing in our environment and the Earth rapidly becoming a plastic planet, what can be done to help fight the problem and keep our beaches beautiful?

The people of Bognor Regis and the surrounding areas are hugely proud of the coastline they have. Thousands of people in the West Sussex area are passionate about keeping their prize winning beaches clean from waste and protecting local wildlife, as well as the beauty that the south coast of England is loved for.

Regular beach clean ups are held in West Sussex, for example, Spirit FM’s Beauty of the Beach campaign which ran throughout the summer, with clean ups at Bognor, Middleton and Aldwick.

It has been part of a Bathing Water Enhancement Programme funded by Southern Water along the seafront between Aldwick and Middleton which has included:

  • Additional dog poo bins
  • Additional litter bins
  • Additional dog/litter signage
  • Litter/dog fouling education/enforcement patrols along the coast through the summer
  • Camera surveys of drains to identify toilets misconnected to the surface water drains (and follow up enforcement action)
  • Investment in Southern Water foul water infrastructure

In addition, a huge metal fish made of scrap metal arrived on Felpham beach recently to help clear up the coast of single use plastics, after spending the summer visiting festivals, parks and towns in the local area to raise awareness of the problem.

Nellie the Final Fat Fish, is a beautiful metal sculpture bin, which is a whopping 6 metres long and made entirely from scrap metal – wheel arches, old boat trailers, the frames from old warehouse trolleys and old chicken wire – made by the team at Sailboat Trailers in Emsworth for The Final Straw Solent campaign. The idea is simple – the public fill Nellie up with their used plastic bottles and aluminium cans, illustrating just how many of these disposable items we use and the huge volume of waste we create. On the campaign’s website, it reads:

“In the UK alone it is estimated that we use up to 13 billion single-use plastic bottles every year, and only just over half of these are recycled.

“They are everywhere, making their way into our precious ecosystems and endangering wildlife, as well as looking unsightly.”

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