Sep 23 2013
ITN, Other Community Groups Tackle Marine Debris on Local Beaches
Monday, 23 September 2013

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           It’s been about four months since Kodiak Island Trails Network hosted a road system beach clean up, but results are finally in. The Coast Walk event took place the first two weeks of June and targeted 81 beaches along Kodiak’s road system for volunteers to document and clean up. That prompted a full summer of unexpected beach clean ups, with various groups and organizations taking on the goal of cleaning and surveying local beaches.
           Tom Pogson is the marine debris coordinator for ITN and recently compiled data from summer clean ups between May 9 and September 9. A total of 47 beaches were cleaned during those four months, and 27 more were surveyed for densities of marine debris. Of those, 23 percent reportedly had marine debris amounts that were “light to none,” 5 percent had “light to medium,” 4 percent had “medium to extreme,” and only 1 percent of those beaches had human debris that was “medium to extreme.”
            In an email, Pogson said 7 beaches along the road system were not visited, primarily because of they are relatively difficult to access.
           In general, Pogson said he is pleased with the clean up efforts this summer, considering 91 percent of the 81 road system beaches were either cleaned or surveyed.