Another 1.7 tonnes off Cape York Beaches

2017 5BL1A massive 1.7 tonnes of marine debris, equal to the weight of a small car, was picked up and sorted by 15 Tangaroa Blue volunteers and Apudthama Rangers recently during a Cape York beach clean-up event. 74 000 items of debris were collected by the team who travelled to the 5 Beaches Loop located at the tip of Cape York. The debris was removed and sorted over 5 days from just over 5 kilometres of beach. The total is a 30% increase from last year.


Chilli Beach Poem - Ode to Tangaroa Blue

Sue Hayes CB1Marine debris is all you can see littered along the beach of windy Chilli 
Anthropogenic detritus of micro plastic bits 
a modern day archaeology of human s**t 
Thai water bottles and fishing boat bleach 
now algaed and brittle washed upon the beach

You may feel disheartened with no hope in sight
kilometres of plastic fragments and a lone whistling kite
But with Clean Coast Collective and Tangaroa Blue
Lockhart kids and Rangers, we know what to do.

Armed with gloves and bags and plenty of sunscreen
though back breaking work, we handpicked the beach clean.
We documented the debris with meticulous rigour
with Heidi at the helm and her cyber track figures

We were constantly yelling random figures in the air
plastic bits, screaming s**ts, data pen beware.
The volunteers had travelled from near and far
to assist in this clean up aided by cars

Mat has his shovel and hacksaw in hand
pulling reams of ghost nets knotted under the sands
Whilst Gandalfian Jeff may look quite demure
he's secretly hunting Sue's illusive marlin lure



Record Breaking and Back Breaking Chilli Beach Clean-up!

20170817 Chilli Beach 1Tangaroa Blue Foundation breaks its own record for the largest amount of marine debris removed during a single beach clean-up event.

Over 5 days, 40 people cleared a massive 7 tonnes of marine debris from 6.7km of coastline on Chilli Beach, Kutini-Payamu National Park in Cape York.

Tangaroa Blue Foundation CEO Heidi Taylor states "It’s a testament to what can be achieved by a dedicated team with a united effort to keep our oceans clean. Not only did the volunteer team remove marine debris from the beach, but they recorded data on everything that was collected which is vital to provide evidence that informs policy making and strategies which tackle marine debris at the source."


Waste & marine debris in remote northern Australian communities

NESPMany Cape York Peninsula (CYP) communities are growing in size, receiving increasing numbers of visitors, and dealing with increasing marine debris washing up on their beaches. A Northern Hub project investigated municipal waste and marine debris management issues in three communities. Tangaroa Blue along with Cape York AMDI partners were able to contribute data and information to assist in this research project. 

See the Publications Tab at: http://www.nespnorthern.edu.au/projects/nesp/waste-and-marine-debris-in-remote-northern-australian-communities/

Final Report - http://www.nespnorthern.edu.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Waste-marine-debris-final-report.pdf

Factsheet - http://www.nespnorthern.edu.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Waste-marine-debris-wrap-up-factsheet.pdf


10 601 Plastic Bottles Sitting on Mapoon Beach

201701 MapoonFrom Monday 10th July until Friday 14th July, a small army of Tangaroa Blue volunteers ran an impressive clean-up mission set against the stunning backdrop of Back Beach, Mapoon in Cape York.

The team comprised 14 volunteers including some local regulars, others who travelled interstate from as far as Christmas Island and a team from the Clean4Shore program and Macmasters Beach Surf Club in central NSW. Tangaroa Blue worked in conjunction with the Traditional Owners of the land and were lent a great deal of help by the Mapoon Land & Sea Rangers. Working side by side the Indigenous Rangers was a particularly rewarding aspect of the operation for many of the volunteers.

In five warm and windy days, the joint effort clocked 6.7 kilometres of beach, amassing a staggering 2.2 tonnes of debris. The big ticket item was quite clearly plastic drink bottles. The 10 601 bottles retrieved accounted for nearly a quarter of the total items collected; the main culprit being the Indonesian water brand Aqua, which totalled 3875 bottles alone. Many of the volunteers have vowed never to purchase plastic drink bottles again.

Other notable statistics include the collection of 5607 pieces of polystyrene foam, 2823 thongs and 1436 cigarette lighters.

Tangaroa Blue would like to thank the Traditional Owners as well as the community of Mapoon for allowing them to continue their clean-up and data collection efforts in Cape York. Thanks also goes to the Australian Government's Improving Your Local Parks and Environment Grant, the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and the Australian Border Force for their ongoing support.

Report by volunteer Tim Sillato.