Members of the Virgin Islands public are encouraged to participate in the 24th annual International Coastal Cleanup which begins this September. Organized globally by the Ocean Conservancy, the USVI Coastweeks effort is coordinated locally by the University of the Virgin Islands, the V.I. Department of Planning and Natural Resources' Coastal Zone Management Division, Friends of the V.I. National Park and the V.I. Waste Management Authority.
Cleanups of beaches and watershed areas are being planned throughout the territory, with the effort beginning on Sept. 19, at Brewer's Bay Beach on UVI's St. Thomas campus. Clean-ups will be held at numerous other locations on St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John during the remainder of September and into October.
Some 390,000 volunteers - including 1,394 in the U.S. Virgin Islands - turned out for the 2008 International Coastal Cleanup. Those USVI volunteers collected 18,598 pounds of containers, nets, cigarettes and other assorted debris along 43 miles of shoreline.
More information on the 2009 USVI Coastweeks effort is available from these contacts:
- St. Thomas - Heather Hitt, CZM Outreach Coordinator at 340-774-3320 x5117 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- St. Croix - Marcia Taylor with Virgin Islands Marine Advisory Service at 340-692-4046 or email@example.com.
- St. John - Audrey Penn with Friends of the VI National Park at 340-779-4940 or firstname.lastname@example.org.