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340kg of rubbish cleared in pan-island beach clean

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OVER 180 volunteers took part in the 2020 big Channel Islands beach clean, removing over 340kg of litter from local coastlines.

A total of five beach cleans took place on Guernsey, Jersey and Alderney on Saturday 11 January under the organisation of the Alderney Wildlife Trust.

'All sorts of weird and wonderful things were found, from toilet seats to car batteries to golf balls,' head of outreach at AWT Claire Thorpe said.

'A more pleasant find was the 16 mermaid's purses [which are] egg cases from sharks and rays, which is good evidence of some of the thriving life beneath the waves.'

In Guernsey alone, 100 people got involved and managed to collect a total of 200kg of rubbish, along with three mermaid's purses.

Results of the clean. Graphic supplied by the Alderney Wildlife Trust. (26909504)

Not only do the cleans keep beaches looking beautiful, they protect wildlife from little pollution.

'Maintaining a diverse, healthy marine environment is key in the fight to halt the climate crisis,' Ms Thorpe said.

'Flourishing ecosystems are more resilient and can help us mitigate and adapt to a changing climate, so conserving marine species and their habitats is hugely important to reduce our islands vulnerability to the threat of climate change.'

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Removing polluting litter from our shores is one way of contributing to this conservation effort.

Beach cleaners in Alderney. Picture supplied by the Alderney Wildlife Trust. (26909500)

The event, celebrating the start of a new year conserving wildlife and the environment, was coordinated on by groups working together including Alderney Wildlife Trust, La Société Guernesiaise (Nature Guernsey), Pick it up Guernsey and Littlefeet Environmental Jersey.

A special thank you was given to the volunteers who helped and islanders were encouraged to keep an eye out for cleans in the coming months.

Zoe Fitch

By Zoe Fitch
News reporter

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