my follow up for all the kind things folks have been saying 🙂
Thank you all for the kind and positive comments! I must admit, sometimes it feels like I’m tilting at windmills… But when we do a ‘second pass’ and find no batteries, and I see the smiling faces of my team members, happy to have been able to ‘do some good’, it makes it 200% worth it!
DF has the right idea with the trash grabbers. If people want to help out with very little effort, get a trash grabber and bucket (or bag)! (someday I’d like to be able to sponsor clean up buckets for school programs) and start in your own front yard, parking strip, ally way, street… Pick up cigarette butts and garbage along your regular walk and the shared greenspace and waterfront. It doesn’t matter how it got there, what is important is cleaning it up!
As divers, picking up UW trash is great, we are the last stand, if we don’t pick it up, who will??!? (maybe a grey whale accidentally?). We are limited though, we can’t spend all day underwater… But think about it, ALL of us (divers and non divers alike, young people, old people and everyone in between), can have even more impact if we proactively remove trash BEFORE it ever reaches the water. On the surface there are no gas supply limits, no decompression limits, the only limit being our free time or the time we actively commit to an act of good.
It is up to us to keep trash out of Puget Sound. Don’t let it get to the storm drain… Don’t let it collect on the beaches. The problem is too large for any one government agency or non-profit group to solve alone, it is up to us a both individuals and as a community to work towards a cleaner (less trash filled at least) environment.
A huge thanks to Neal Chism for his inspiration with regards to this effort, watching him pick up trash from the Duwamish waterway was very moving to me. One man against a never ending flow of trash. I guess something went “ping” in my head and knew that just shooting video to build awareness was not enough. I’ve been encouraging folks to clean up parking lots and streets for some time (keep stuff out of the storm outfall), but this isn’t encouragement anymore, this is recruitment 🙂