Islanders out in force at weekend for beach cleans

ISLANDERS turned out once again this weekend to keep Guernsey beaches clean.

Beach Clean Bordeaux - 22/09/19 - By Ben Fiore (25853616)
Beach Clean Bordeaux - 22/09/19 - By Ben Fiore (25853616)

Throughout the week a number of initiatives have been taking place, culminating in two beach clean events: Vazon on Saturday and Bordeaux yesterday22/09.

Fran Browning from Guernsey Recycling said about 70 people helped at Vazon.

‘Fairtrade Guernsey were also there,’ she said.

‘Some people have said there isn’t much litter but I think they are looking for larger items. It’s when these things break down into segments that they are dangerous to the marine environment. We’ve seen it in Alderney with the gannets and the fishing lines in their nests.’

Ms Browning said they collected around 50kg of rubbish from Saturday alone which Guernsey Recycling will now sort.

La Societe marine biology secretary Laura Bampton said she hoped data collected from beach cleans like these could be sent to Marine Conservation.

‘This would involve measuring 100m across the beach from where the high tide line is to the back of the beach and recording all the rubbish found in the area.’

One way to record this is through an app and bursary students from C5 Alliance have developed one.

‘It came from the question, how can we help keep Guernsey beaches clean, and they came up with the coastal clean up app,’ said software development team leader Steve Falla, who was at the beach clean with the app.

‘We’d like to get it out there, and out to the womblers. We think they will like it but it needs to be stable and do what they want it to do first,’ he said.

App users score points for collecting rubbish, which makes litter picking a game.

Trying out the app at Bordeaux were Ladies’ College students from the school’s Environment team.

‘We’re trying to make our school more eco-friendly and promote supporting the community,’ said Ella James, 17.

Will Stewart said he often picks up litter anyway and thought he would come to the organised one having seen it advertised.

‘It’s just everywhere now and people are so aware of the effects it’s having on the environment, fish, and getting stuck in birds’ throats.

‘I dread to think what’s out there, it doesn’t do anything any good.’

Suzanne Thompson had brought her children and school friends to help.

‘We did the beach clean yesterday at Vazon. We only live 40 minutes from here so thought we’d come down,’

She said that a lot of litter along the paths can get to the beaches.

‘It can kill animals if they eat it,’ said Sophie Thompson, eight.

‘I recently found out that turtles love eating jellyfish and that plastic bags look like them and so the turtles think they are jellyfish and eat them.

‘It’s not good for anything,’ said Finn Harrington, seven.

Iris Thompson, six, said they had found a few bits of rubbish so far but were just getting started.

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