On Monday morning, after looking up when low tide was (which was a lie, thanks GOOGLE!), my mom and I set out to the beach to hunt for some sea glass. We grabbed some reusable produce bags (perfect for sifting out sand) and headed out. Before we got down to the water, we could tell it was not time for low tide, but figured we might as well take a walk along the ocean since we were already there.
With bags in hand, it was inevitable that our eyes would spot any trash we might see, but we did not expect to see quite as much as we had. From plastic bottle caps to sandwich containers, kids toys to beach/boardwalk wristbands, beer cans to cigarettes (yes, on the beach), and so very many in between, the amount of garbage we found in about a 1.5 mile walk was remarkable. We spent only one hour picking up trash, walking from N Street in Seaside Park to the pier in Seaside Heights and back.
I assumed that most of the garbage we were finding was from the night before. However, approximately one quarter of the garbage shown in the photo above was picked up on our walk back. This meaning garbage was brought in from the ocean and dumped on the sand in under one hour. Imagine how many bags we would have needed if we walked the entirety of Seaside Park.
It's simple to see a straw on the ground below you and not pick it up because it isn't yours. In some cases, people avoid doing this for sanitary reasons, but I tend to believe that most people decide they won't be picking it up before they even think about the sanitary aspect of it.
We didn't find any sea glass on Monday. We thought we had found one piece, but we sorted through the trash at home, we quickly realized that piece of "sea glass" was sadly just another piece of plastic.
Jamie is a musician, avid lover of nature, and a dog momma living a more sustainable life each and every day.