Here at Brooklyn Bridge Park, the majority of our volunteers contribute their time by cleaning and beautifying the Park’s green spaces. The gardens and lawns are some of the most utilized areas of the Park—used for picnics, parties and playing sports. But did you know volunteers help clean the coastline as well? During Coastal Cleanups, the focus is solely on the waterfront: not just cleaning the coast, but protecting the environment.
The waterfront is an important aspect of the Park; in fact, it is one of the features that makes the Park so popular. As the premier waterfront park in New York City, the coastline provides unsurpassed views and excellent locations to relax and play, especially during the summer. We offer programs that take place in the water, such as seining and kayaking, as well as our world-class marina. The water is as important to the Park as the piers themselves. And just as the gardens need maintenance, the coastline needs care and upkeep, too.
This is where Coastal Cleanups come in. Once a month at low tide, volunteers work together to clean the coastline. They pick up trash that has washed ashore from the river and record what they find. Afterwards they weigh the trash collected. On average, each session collects around fifty pounds of trash. The most common found item? Plastic water bottles!
At the end of the season, the findings are compiled to show the types of trash found in our city waters. Ultimately, Coastal Cleanups are not just about picking up trash. We use our findings to understand how important it is for everyone to be careful with debris that may otherwise end up in the water and become dangerous to the local ecosystem. As park-goers, it is our responsibility to protect the environment so it can be healthy and vibrant for both humans and animals alike.
There are still a few Coastal Clean-up sessions left this summer season. Join us at the salt marshes and help us keep our coastline clean, safe and beautiful. Sign up here.