29 Feb 2020

Christchurch beach clean up kicks off National SeaWeek

6:40 pm on 29 February 2020

Hundreds of Christchurch residents united to help save sea life by cleaning up local beaches today.

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Christchurch's Sumner Beach is one of three to get a spruce up today. Photo: 123RF

More than 330 Cantabrians registered to take part in The Big Clean initiative which is running for its second year, in collaboration with Hirepool and Sustainable Coastlines.

The clean up of three Christchurch beaches kicks off National SeaWeek which starts today until 8 March.

Hirepool Marketing Manager Shaun Owen said they are passionate about making a difference.

Sustainable Coastlines co-founder Camden Howitt, who grew up in Ōtautahi, said: "This promises to be our largest beach clean-up in Christchurch and we're excited to be able to work with amazing local community groups".

Last year over 9200 litres of waste, equivalent to 180 wheelbarrow loads, were collected by 226 volunteers in three hours at the Onehunga foreshore in Auckland during the Hirepool Big Clean Up, he said.

The foreshore was so littered that plants were growing with their roots tangled in microplastics - tiny pieces of plastic debris that do not break down and are ingested by sea life.

Local community groups will be running clean-up registration stations.

New Brighton Beach, Sumner Beach and Lyttelton Harbour were run by Sustain South Brighton, Remix Plastic and Conservation Volunteers New Zealand respectively.