Clean Ocean Action’s 27th Annual Fall Beach Sweeps – Saturday, October 20

Coastal New Jersey – Today, thousands of volunteers hit the beaches to participate in Clean Ocean Action's (COA) 27th Annual Fall Beach Sweeps at 60 sites along the Jersey Shore. Volunteers removed and catalogued each piece of debris to document ongoing pollution issues.  Robust crowds were reported up and down the coast.  The Beach Sweeps begin at 9am and end at 12:30 pm.

Volunteers “Go Green” on Sandy Hook with shirts donated by ShopRite

“Human trash is now found on every shoreline in the world and throughout the global ocean.  Human trash not only makes beaches ugly, it maims and kills marine life.  We must do more to reduce plastic pollution and Beach Sweeps are one way citizens can help.  People love the beach and ocean and are proud of the real Jersey Shore, it is inspiring and our elected officials should take note.” said Cindy Zipf, Executive Director of COA. 

The data collected today will be combined with data collected at the Spring Beach Sweep this past April; it will then be analyzed and presented in an annual report. These annual reports identify pollution problems, educate citizens on the types and quantities of debris, aid legislators in passing and enforcing laws to protect the marine environment, and contribute to local and international efforts to combat marine pollution.  Last year’s 2011 Annual Beach Sweep Report is available at

Volunteers know the importance of collecting data during the Beach Sweeps

“The Beach Sweeps are an excellent illustration of the public’s support for a clean ocean,” commented Tavia Danch, Clean Ocean Action’s Education Coordinator for Pollution Prevention. “The program, specifically the data-collection element, builds community support for solutions, raises awareness about the negative impacts of litter, and teaches citizens about the types and quantities of debris found,” added Danch.

The Fall Beach Sweeps were made possible by support from generous sponsors.  The Statewide Sponsors for the 2012 Beach Sweeps are Atlantic City Electric, Aveda, Bank of America, Comcast, Montecalvo Material Recovery Facility, Surfers Environmental Alliance, and Wakefern/Shoprite. 

“Atlantic City Electric is proud to continue our support of Clean Ocean Action and its legacy of improving water quality and protecting waterways through public education and citizen outreach,” said Ken Mosca, Public Affairs Manager, Atlantic City Electric.

“I cannot stress how important it is to be involved in an organization like Clean Ocean Action,” said Valerie Montecalvo, President of Bayshore Recycling Corporation, whose reclamation complex is located in Woodbridge, NJ. “The abundance of waste and floatable debris found on New Jersey’s beaches is shocking. The survival of our ocean and its precious ecosystems are vital to the existence of mankind and its future generations,” she added.

Since 1985, over 90,000 volunteers have participated and removed over 4.5 million pieces of debris from New Jersey's beaches and waterways.  To date, Beach Sweeps is one of the longest running cleanups of its kind in the world. 

Clean Ocean Action released a Beach Sweeps video, produced by Jersey-native Sandy Levine, online earlier this week.  To watch the video, visit or visit COA’s YouTube Channel.

To learn more about the Beach Sweeps and Clean Ocean Action, call 732-872-0111 or visit

Fall 2012 Highlights:

  • a plastic heel from a shoe, underwear, a medical mask, weather stripping materials, a baseball, diapers, baby doll leg, fishing pole, piece of a pier, a Barbie shoe, bubble wands, 4 toothbrush heads


Sandy Hook Highlights:

  • Over 400 volunteers swept five locations on Sandy Hook.   Several of the items found are as follows: 3,460 food and candy wrappers, 142 rubber balloons, 3,316 plastic straws and stirrers, 106 plastic light sticks and 571 plastic forks, knives and spoons.


Atlantic City Highlights:

  • House of Blues in Atlantic City donated free tickets to this evening’s performance of Surf rock/reggae band from Southern California, Slightly Stoopid, to the top ten participants who collect the most trash during the Beach Sweeps in Atlantic City.