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Cleaning The Coast After The Storm

IN the wake of Hurricane Irma, volunteers throughout the country are preparing to take part in the Ocean Conservancy's 32nd anniversary of International Coastal Cleanup on Saturday, September 16.

Volunteers from all over the world have gathered every year along coastlines and waterways to participate in the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC).

Many walk, others set out on boats and thousands more don scuba gear to seek trash below the water's surface.

Last year, 791,336 people from 91 countries picked up more than 18 million pounds of trash along 25,188 miles of coastline.

This year celebrates 32 years of volunteerism for a healthier ocean.

As such, it makes a powerful statement about global concern for the environment and empowers local communities to do something about pollution.

"Hurricane Irma will make this clean up even more important as there will be more debris in her wake. The Bahamas has participated for many years in the Ocean Conservancy's ICC and we will again this year to make difference to our marine environment," said Annette Dempsey, director of education for Dolphin Encounters on Blue Lagoon Island and co-ordinator of ICC in New Providence.

"This year, we return to South Beach (poolside) from 8am to 10am and encourage members of the public to join us. The South Beach area is filled with mangroves that are critical to our marine life."

There will be free bus transportation available every 30 minutes starting at 7.30am from the Marathon Mall and Southwest Plaza. Volunteers are advised to please wear closed in shoes, sunscreen and gardening gloves.

Email Annette Dempsey at education@dolphinencounters.com for more information or to volunteer. To learn more about International Coastal Cleanup, visit www.oceanconservancy.org.

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