Clean Coasts Week Protecting Ireland’s Beaches Seas & Marine Life

Coca-Cola Clean Coasts Week is a national initiative run by An Taisce which empowers communities to protect and celebrate their local coastal environment. The week takes place from Friday 11th to Friday 18th May 2012 and forms part of An Taisce’s Clean Coasts Programme. Ireland has 5,000 km of coastline, regarded to be among the most spectacular in the world and Clean Coasts Week encourages local communities to work together to protect this invaluable natural resource. Some of the events that are taking place are:

• The BIG BEACH CLEAN kicks off today with more than 70 groups taking part in a coastal clean-up over the weekend. It is expected that more than 20 tonnes of waste will be removed from the Irish coastline as a result of this initiative!
• On Sunday 13th May at 11am An Taisce’s Clean Coasts programme is partnering with Irish Water Safety to host a Surf Rescue demonstration & competition on Killiney beach. All welcome, great prizes to be won!
• On Monday 14th An Taisce are partnering with the Commissioners of Irish Lights to host presentation which celebrates the Lighthouses of Ireland. A few spaces remaining!
• On Tuesday 15th An Taisce will be launching their annual Coastcare Merit Awards which are about celebrating Ireland’s coastal custodians. There are now 254 Coastcare Groups registered on the Clean Coasts Programme. They have made an incredible impact in protecting their coastal environment and these awards are about celebrating their efforts.
• On Wednesday 16th An Taisce will launch its ever popular Clean Coasts Photography Competition and with a prize fund of €4,000 it is expected to attract considerable attention from Ireland’s ammature photographers.
• On Thursday 17th An Taisce are partnering with TG4 and Sea Fever Productions for a film screening of Farraigí na hEireann, the acclaimed coastal documentary.
• On Saturday 19th Wexford Sub Aqua Clean up beneath the waves from 9:30 – 12:00
• On Saturday 19th Marram Grass Planting on Portmarnock Beach 11am – SAVE OUR DUNES
• Check out http://www.cleancoastsweek.ie/home.php to find an event in your area or to register your own! There are also some great prizes to win throughout the week. From weekend breaks to aquaria family passes, tee-shirts and lots more!!!
Speaking about Clean Coasts Week Annabel FitzGerald, Coastal Programmes Manager, said “Marine litter is a global concern, affecting all the oceans of the world. Every year, millions and millions of tonnes of litter end up in our seas and oceans worldwide, posing environmental, economic, health and aesthetic problems….All action no matter how small makes a difference and so we are very proud of the work of An Taisce’s Coastcare groups who volunteer all year round to protect their local coastal area. We all have a responsibility in caring for our coastline.”

Minister Phil Hogan who launched Clean Coasts Week said “In Ireland we have such an extensive and beautiful coastline. I support the Clean Coasts week initiative because it emphasises the importance of looking after our coastline. It is in the national interest that we all try to protect and improve the high quality of our coastline which is a major feature in selling Ireland as a tourist destination abroad. I would encourage as many people as possible to get involved and participate in the many varied activities that will take place throughout the week to help make our coastline the best it can be and to attract visitors from both near and far”.

Speaking about Coca-Cola’s support of An Taisce’s Clean Coasts Programme, Erica Roseingrave, Coca-Cola Hellenic Ireland said: “Coca-Cola is committed to investing in the local environment, protecting the natural beauty of our beaches and encouraging community participation in preserving our landscape. The Coca Cola Clean Coasts Week programme emphasises the important role that we can all play, in conserving our marine environment. We are delighted to once again partner with An Taisce in support of this initiative, where all across the country, local communities will be coming together to celebrate the wonderful natural resource that is our extensive coastline.”

Help a coastline you love by participating in An Taisce’s Coca-Cola Clean Coasts Week, register online www.cleancoastsweek.ie .

The Clean Coasts programme is owned and operated by the Environmental Education Unit of An Taisce and is supported by the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, Coca-Cola and Fáilte Ireland.

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