Manhasset Bay beach cleaners remove almost 250 pounds of trash

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Volunteers cleaned up nearly 300 pounds of trash along Manorhaven beach. (Photo courtesy of Manhasset Bay Protection Committee)

The Town of North Hempstead, the Manhasset Bay Protection Committee and their partners would like to thank everyone who came out on a sunny Saturday morning last fall and made the beach clean-up a success.

Approximately 75 adult and child volunteers picked up an estimated 242 pounds of trash despite Manorhaven Beach looking impressively clean.

The No. 1 item picked up by far was cigarette butts, of course, but more alarming is what came in second: tiny plastic pieces (less than 2.5 cm in diameter) of trash that can be easily ingested by sea life and passed into the food web, posing health risks for animals and humans.

“Luckily, we were able to stop some of these before getting into the food web, but it is a reminder to be vigilant and that even small things can be a big problem,” said Manhasset Bay Protection Committee Executive Director, Sarah Deonarine, in a thank you e-mail to the volunteers.

On Sept. 23, 2017, as part of the International Coastal Cleanup, local residents, girl and boy scouts and their families, members of the Manhasset High School Green Club and others convened at the boat ramp at Manorhaven Beach Town Park to sign-in and collect their supplies.

People then broke into groups and headed out onto the beach or towards Sheets Creek, being sure to record what they collected on Ocean Conservancy data cards. Among the most interesting finds were a bunny tail keychain, a tire, and a car battery – heralding an important reminder that dumping is illegal and tires and car batteries must be properly disposed of or else they risk a public health concern.

“The town appreciates the hard work of the Manhasset Bay Protection Committee,” Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth said. “Our shorelines are so important and it’s imperative that we keep them clean for our future generations. Through clean-ups, such as the ones hosted by the Manhasset Bay Protection Committee, we are able to help keep our waterways clean and restore them to their natural splendor.”

Also present were members from the Community Reformed Church and the North Shore Kayak Club and State Assemblyman Anthony D’Urso who represents Assembly District 16.

“I was glad to have had the opportunity to help clean the Manorhaven Beach,” D’Urso said. “It is essential to keep our beaches clean; the garbage left on our beaches ends up in the oceans and harms the sea-life. The garbage is unsightly and unsafe for the residents who use the beach. The work we spend cleaning our beaches today will preserve and maintain our beaches, keeping them cleaner and healthier for the future.”

The Manhasset Bay Protection Committee is an inter-municipal organization aimed at addressing water quality and coastal issues in Manhasset Bay with a coordinated, watershed-level approach.

The committee has 15 member municipalities: Nassau County, the Town of North Hempstead, and 13 Villages who all voluntarily entered into an inter-municipal agreement. The Committee’s goals are to protect, restore, and enhance Manhasset Bay so as to insure a healthy and diverse marine ecosystem while balancing and maintaining recreational and commercial uses. Tasks that help toward these goals include the annual volunteer beach clean-up.

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