Volunteers help remove 1,600 pounds of garbage
Volunteers remove 1600 pounds of garbage from Sandy Point Beach during 6th annual Nature Conservancy of Canada cleanup.
A whopping 12 cubic yards of garbage (1,600 pounds) was removed from Sandy Point Beach on Saturday, Sept. 15.
A team of 21 volunteers, staff members from the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) and five local helpers with ATVs to move some of the heavier garbage, worked for over three hours to bring the beach back to its natural, pristine, litter free state.
It takes a village to restore a beach, so organizers from NCC also enlisted the help of Barachois Search and Rescue and fish harvesters Logan and Limbert Young to provide boat transportation to the island. Containerized Sanitation donated a dumpster. Funding for the cleanup was provided by the federal government through the Natural Areas Conservation Program and the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation.
The NCC conserved 67 acres on Sandy Point, an island and site of a resettled community in St. George’s Bay. The 2,471-acre island contains sand dunes and salt marches, features that are uncommon to the province and are important nesting habitats for numerous bird species. Over the last five years over 3,000 pounds of garbage have been removed from Sandy Point.
Julie Lawler, N.L. stewardship assistant for NCC said the removal of garbage is an important endeavor.
“It prevents plastics and other waste from breaking apart in the ocean, but it also helps prevent wildlife from ingesting the garbage or getting entangled in it,” she said.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada’s N.L. branch organized four volunteer events this year, including bird counts and tree planting. Lawler says becoming involved in their events offers many benefits.
“It’s great to get people out on the land and to feel connected to natural areas,” Lawler said. “It also gives people the ability to partake in conservation and stewardship, to lend a helping hand, it builds friendships and it’s great to look back on the wonderful work that we did together.”
The organization’s final event in N.L. will be the Codroy Valley fall bird survey held in Upper Ferry on Saturday, Sept. 22.
Volunteers gather to help clean up Sandy Point Beach on Saturday, Sept. 15.