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What is a trash bash?

A  birthday Trash Bash at Hout Bay Beach on 27 November is how the Two Oceans Aquarium is celebrating its 26th birthday. Capetonians, and visitors alike, are invited to join on the day to clean the beach and to do something good for the ocean.

Stand a chance to win a prize by guessing the total weight of the trash collected on the day. The Aquarium and Consol Glass are offering the three closest guesses a lovely Consol Glass reusable #IChanged2050 bottle, a Two Oceans Aquarium reusable shopping bag, and Aquarium entrance tickets as prizes.

What is Trash Bash?
The Two Oceans Aquarium has been doing beach clean-ups for many years, but wanted to provide more opportunities for people to take part in beach cleanups around Cape Town on a regular basis. Since 2018, the Aquarium’s Trash Bash campaign has visited many of Cape Town’s beaches and has had thousands of volunteers spending time to cleanup and record the items found. Trash Bash uses the Dirty Dozen methodology which focuses on 12 items that are often found on beaches. These items, like plastic bags, bottles, straws and sweet wrappers, are all recorded and the data forms part of a scientific study on plastics in the ocean.

At the Trash Bash events, participants are divided into working teams where one person is assigned the role of scribe (using the downloaded app on their phone) and records all of the items that are collected, while the other members of the team are responsible for picking up and identifying the trash.

Why do we need to clean the beach?
Estimates are that by 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean, by weight, than fish. Our world ocean is in dire peril, facing a human-made crisis and desperately needs us to turn the tide on plastic and other pollution within the marine environment. Studies have shown that millions of seabirds have ingested plastic and a staggering number of sea animals die each year from either ingesting plastic, or becoming entangled in plastic debris.

Unlike organic materials, plastic does not break down into naturals components. Through exposure to the elements (sun, wind and water), it breaks up into smaller pieces called microplastic. Even when a beach seems completely devoid of litter, taking a closer look, one is very likely to find these tiny bits of plastic everywhere mixed in with the sand. These microplastics end up in the marine environment where they are mistaken for food and consumed by animals as small as microscopic plankton. Humans, being at the top of the food chain, then consume the animals that have eaten plastic, which brings the plastic back onto our plates and into our bodies.

Beach cleanups are vital as they prevent plastic and other trash from being deposited into the ocean. We can all do something to look after the environment, and cleaning a beach is an easy and fun way of making a contribution to, and a connection with, nature. These cleanups also contribute to scientific studies through the data collected.

Witzands Aquifer Nature ReserveCleanups, like Trash Bash, are not only good for the environment, they are also important for the people taking part, and the community as a whole. Spending time outside and with like-minded people, creates a sense of responsibility for the environment and brings people together to care for areas within their communities.

Have you seen  the new Cape Town Green COASTAL Map focusing on the City’s 307 km coastline?

WHERE: Hout Bay Beach (Parking next to Mariner’s Warf)
WHEN: 27 November 2021 from 09h00 – 11h00
WHAT TO BRING: Sunblock, hat, water to drink (in a reusable bottle) and reusable gloves (like the ones you would use in the garden). Please remember to wear your mask in public.
INSTALL: Add the Marine Debris Tracker app on your phone (iOS | Android) to log the litter that is collected (once you have downloaded the app, join The Beach Co-op’s list).
INFO: visit 

See also Cape Town Green Map