Local volunteers, including a new Girl Scout Troop, collected almost 100 bags of trash from area beaches on and after September 25 as part of the Ocean Conservancy International Coastal Cleanup, according to Bobbi Johnson, who organized the cleanup effort as part of the local Blue Flag Committee of Guiones Beach.
The annual Ocean Conservancy project had 500,000 volunteers in 100 countries last year who collected and identified 7.4 million pounds of trash. Johnson said more than 50 local volunteers collected 367 kilos of trash and identified it as 80% plastic, mostly from bottles, with substantial bits of Styrofoam as well.
The new Daisy Girl Scout Troop #7401 used the beach cleanup as their first meeting and are inviting all girls in the community 5-7 years old who might be interested in becoming part of the Daisies, according to sponsor Aimee Burnham.
Burnham said, “Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. The Daisy troop will be working on environmental stewardship in the community with acts such as planting flowers, beach clean ups and other activities.”
The troop will support itself through fundraising activities, including selling cookies. It is multicultural and bilingual, and is seeking bilingual volunteers to help. Any girls interested in joining are welcome to have their parents email Burnham at: [email protected].
As a result of local efforts, including monthly beach clean-ups, Playa Guiones and Peladas has earned the right to fly Costa Rica's prestigious Blue Flag that identifies the beaches that meet the highest standard of beach cleanliness, sea water quality, potable water, wastewater treatment, environmental education, security and manageability.
Because much of the trash is washed down the rivers from flooding, worse than usual this year, more clean-up is already necessary.