An Introduction to Coastal Plastic
This short introduction to the Washington coast is also a pretty good introduction to the Ikkatsu Project. There are always beach surveys and cleanups, both here in Washington and all up and down the west coast, but the roadless coast is a unique and special place.
2018... Always Looking Forward
The 2017 programs are winding up and planning for 2018 is well underway. The freshwater microplastics monitoring program is getting ready to enter its third year in the Sumner School District, and the steady accumulation of sampling records is starting to give us a good picture of the level of plastic in the Puyallup River watershed.
Coastal monitoring of selected beaches continued in 2017 and will also go forward, with an increased focus on the two major beach cleanup weekends, one in April and the other in September. Survey activity will be centered around these events, along with counts of the significant amount of debris that will be collected.
Alaska is back on the calendar as well. After an amazing paddle to the Cape Decision lighthouse in July, a return is being planned for the summer of 2018 that will include multiple beach cleanups and a larger microplastic sampling program, along with the start of a multi-year debris deposition study. By fully cleaning selected beaches and then returning to survey them on a regular basis, the sample deposition rates that we track for that specific part of southeast Alaska will help us understand the accumulation of plastic debris on remote wilderness beaches. This is exciting stuff... there will be more on this throughout the year.
There’s more to tell, and details on the things that have already happened can be found in the archives: there will likely be another trip to Washington DC to lobby elected representatives on ocean-related issues, attempts to navigate the local (south Sound) fossil fuel related legislation, coordinated programs with Surfrider and the Japan Environmental Action Network, and so on. Somewhere in there we're going to have the chance to actually host a sociable, something that we normally forget to do, and it will be awesome! Please check in with the journal as the year progresses for more information. And thank you to all who have supported the Ikkatsu Project with your time, money and good will throughout the years.
There is still plenty to be done.