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Time for Adopt-a-Beach fall clean up

Sept. 20, 2012 at 4:20 a.m.


Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson is urging all Texans to take advantage of their right to access the public beach on Saturday for the 26th Annual Texas General Land Office Fall Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup. The cleanup will take place at three sites in the Victoria area.

"A right not exercised is a right that will be lost," Patterson said in the news release. "Join us Saturday for a fun time and a great cause, exercising your rights and keeping Texas beaches trash-free."

Volunteers should wear shoes, a hat and sunscreen. Volunteers will be given data cards, gloves, pencils and trash bags. Most sites along the coast conclude the day's cleanup with cold drinks, hot food and activities.

The Texas General Land Office Adopt-A-Beach program began in fall 1986, when 2,800 volunteers picked up 124 tons of trash. Since then, it has grown into one of the most successful all-volunteer efforts in the nation. In 26 years, 430,000 Adopt-A-Beach volunteers have picked up more than 8,300 tons of trash from the Texas Gulf Coast.

The data collected from the beach cleanups played an integral part in the passage of MARPOL Annex V, an international treaty that prohibits the dumping of plastics in the world's oceans. In July 1991, the International Maritime Organization designated the Gulf of Mexico and the Wider Caribbean as a "special area" where the dumping of trash, with the exception of finely ground food scraps, is prohibited.

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