Today marks the start of the Great British Beach Clean, a week-long citizen science event encouraging people across the country to help clean up their local beaches.
The event is organised by the Marine Conservation Society who are asking people to complete a litter survey, recording all the items of rubbish they find. This data is then used to campaign for real change to improve our beaches and oceans.
What we’re doing
The council’s Streets Operations team clean the beach each morning and we’re also working to remove plastics from the waste system, for example by investigating the collection of low-grade plastics like food pots, tubs, and trays. We recently launched 6 water fountains across the city centre to minimise use of single-use plastic water bottles.
We have developed an A-Z of items that can be recycled and earlier this year launched a Circular Economy Champions scheme to encourage reuse, repair and recycling. Over 30 tonnes of older electrical plastic items have been saved from going to landfill with the opening of the Revaluit store on North Street.
Small efforts, big difference
Jamie Lloyd, lead councillor for biodiversity, said: “The seafront is an integral part of Brighton & Hove and draws millions of visitors to the city each year so we must do everything we can to protect and enhance this unique coastal environment.
“We ask all visitors to take their rubbish home where possible or use the many bins provided along the seafront.
“We are also grateful to our partner organisations who organise beach cleans which are a brilliant way for the community to help protect the UNESCO coastline.”
Local beach cleans
You can get involved by joining a local beach clean:
- Saturday 17 September: Brighton Big Beach Clean-up (meet on the beach by Ohso Social Club)
- Thursday 22 September: King Alfred Leisure Centre beach clean (10:30am to 1:30pm)
- Saturday 24 September: Surfers Against Sewage Million Mile Beach Clean (2pm to 4pm)
If you’d like to organise your own beach cleaning event, visit our beach clean page You can also volunteer with the council’s Tidy Up Team, where members can receive training and equipment to conduct their own litter picks at a convenient time for them.
Surfers Against Sewage
Surfers Against Sewage is a grassroots charity dedicated to the protection of the ocean, beaches and wildlife. Part of their work involves campaigning to eliminate plastic pollution choking our seas. Surfers Against Sewage Brighton organise beach clean events and work with schools to encourage them to be plastic free.
Surfers Against Sewage’s recent Million Mile Beach Clean uncovered the 12 companies responsible for 70% of plastic and packaging pollution on beaches across the country. The year-long project identified Coca Cola, PepsiCo, and McDonalds as the 3 biggest polluters.
Leave No Trace
Leave No Trace Brighton is made up of local beach lovers who are raising awareness and action to protect our beaches and green spaces. They aim to educate, encourage and empower people to reduce, reuse, recycle or properly dispose of rubbish so our beaches, green spaces and seas can be clean and tidy for everyone to enjoy.
Leave No Trace Brighton is running its #Take3ForTheSea campaign until 30 September, inviting beach visitor to collect 3 items of rubbish each time they visit Brighton seafront. For more information about the campaign, visit Leave No Trace Brighton’s Instagram page.
The Living Coast
The Living Coast is a collective of more than 40 organisations led by Brighton & Hove City Council. It is the UK’s only UNESCO-designated urban biosphere reserve and stretches from Newhaven to Shoreham-by-Sea, extending two nautical miles out to sea. The Living Coast’s projects cover nature conservation, sustainable development and tourism, and environmental awareness.
The Living Coast Undersea Experience enables people to explore what’s under the sea through virtual reality, opening up one of the rarest habitats that very few people get to experience and highlighting the importance of conservation.
- Saturday 17 September: The Living Coast Undersea Experience at Newhaven.
- Saturday 24 September: The Living Coast Undersea Experience at Peacehaven.