Every year in the rainy season, the beaches of the Pacific coast of Costa Rica receive tons of garbage. Beach clean-ups began as an emergency and have become a healthy custom every year. In this article find out why beach clean-ups are so necessary.
The Sad Reality
Not long ago, it was believed that due to the immense size and depth of the ocean, garbage and substances could be dumped into its waters without great consequences for the environment. Unfortunately, many people still believe this (or are not yet aware of this) and continue to dump their waste into the sea and rivers. That’s why at the bottom of the sea, deep down, there is garbage that has been buried for many years. At the river exits, there is garbage trapped and there is much more floating in the ocean. With the heavy rains the rivers are cleaned and everything flows out to the sea where it mixes with the garbage that floats in the ocean and with which it has been buried for many years and is removed by the currents.
The cycle recurs
Every year the cycle repeats itself and in the rainy season, the beaches of the Pacific coast of Costa Rica receive tons of garbage. We know this cycle very well as we have suffered and fought it for more than 15 years of teaching surfing in our perfect beginner’s beach in Playa Grande.
How to clean the sea
With the help of our entire community and some institutions, we have managed to improve the situation by regularly conducting beach clean-ups. Every year we see how little by little the amount of plastic that reaches the beach sand is reduced.
Cleaning our beaches has been hard work but we have managed to remove plastic that had been lying around for years on our ocean beaches and with the higher tides it moved from one place to another and always ended up on our beaches.
The beach is the only place where the oceans can fulfill their natural cleaning process. In the past, the tides left wood and logs on the beaches of the Pacific coast and made the water clean without solids. Now, the tide also leaves the plastic on the sand of the Pacific coast and if the sand on the beaches is not clean then the plastic returns to the sea. There is no place where the sea can be cleaned, this makes beach clean-ups a necessity and priority for cleaning Costa Rica’s ocean beaches.
New and healthy habit
In Montezuma, we do several cleanings a year, sometimes in large groups but many locals have the custom of taking a bag full of garbage home with them every time they visit the beach. If you do not live on the beach to participate in the beach clean-ups the best way to help is to become aware of the problem and recycle, reuse and reduce. It doesn’t take much work, just will and a little organization and in a short time, a new and healthy habit is created!