A Voice for Our Ocean

MEDIA ADVISORY: Ocean Conservancy Invites Washingtonians to #SeatheChange at the 37th Annual International Coastal Cleanup

D.C. based nonprofit calls for volunteers to help tackle the global plastic pollution crisis in their own backyard

English Español Français Deutsch Italiano Português русский বঙ্গীয় 中文 日本語
Washington DC_2021_Credit Rafeed Hussain + Ocean Conservancy (1)
© Rafeed Hussain

WASHINGTON, DC – Ocean Conservancy invites Washingtonians to be a part of the global effort to tackle the threat of ocean plastic pollution as the organization’s International Coastal Cleanup® (ICC) returns to Kingman and Heritage Islands in the Anacostia River on Saturday, September 17. The Washington D.C.-based nonprofit’s flagship cleanup event has drawn crowds of more than a thousand in past years, with volunteers collecting over 6,300 pounds of trash in 2019.

“With more than a garbage truck’s worth of plastics entering the ocean every minute, we all have a role to play in protecting our waters, from the Atlantic to the Anacostia,” said Allison Schutes, director of the ICC at Ocean Conservancy.  “Joining a cleanup, no matter where you are, is one of the most immediate ways you can make a difference for our ocean and the creatures that call it home. That’s why Ocean Conservancy is inviting Washingtonians to #SeatheChange for themselves by joining the ICC this September.”

After two years of canceled or scaled down flagship cleanups due to the pandemic, the event is expected to be a return to pre-COVID turnout. Trash collected by D.C. volunteers typically consists of the most common items found on beaches and waterways worldwide, most of which are single-use plastics: food wrappers, cigarette butts (which contain a plastic filter), plastic beverage bottles, plastic bottle caps, plastic bags are among the top offenders globally and locally.  The cleanup also yields some stranger finds: last year, a traffic cone, a polaroid camera, and an intact electric moped scooter were collected from the shores of Kingman Island.

Launched in 1986, the ICC has mobilized more than 17 million volunteers to remove nearly 350 million pounds of trash from beaches and waterways worldwide. In 2021, Ocean Conservancy was announced as a beneficiary of YouTubers MrBeast and Mark Rober’s viral #TeamSeas campaign, which successfully raised more than 30 million dollars to remove more than 30 million pounds of trash from beaches and waterways. Ocean Conservancy is partnering with its ICC network to help reach the 30-million-pound removal goal. Since January, more than 48,000 #TeamSeas volunteers across dozens of countries have collected nearly 5 million pounds of trash through local beach cleanup efforts.

  • Allison Schutes, Director of the International Coastal Cleanup, will be available for interviews
  • Hundreds of local volunteers
WHAT Flagship International Coastal Cleanup event
WHEN Saturday, September 17, 9:00 AM – Noon
WHERE Kingman Island, Washington, D.C. 20002


NOTE: Volunteers can register on Eventbrite. Volunteers will receive cleanup supplies and t-shirts. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.


NOTE TO EDITORS: Photos and b-roll from last year’s DC cleanup can be found here.

Ocean Conservancy has led the fight for a clean, healthy ocean free of trash since 1986, when the U.S.-based nonprofit launched its annual International Coastal Cleanup (ICC). Since then, Ocean Conservancy has mobilized millions of ICC volunteers to remove trash from beaches and waterways around the world while pioneering upstream solutions to the growing ocean plastics crisis. Ocean Conservancy invests in cutting-edge scientific research, implements on-the-ground projects, and works with conservationists, scientists, governments, the private sector and members of the public to change the plastics paradigm. To learn more about our Trash Free Seas® program visit

About Ocean Conservancy

Ocean Conservancy is working to protect the ocean from today’s greatest global challenges. Together with our partners, we create evidence-based solutions for a healthy ocean and the wildlife and communities that depend on it. For more information, visit, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Back to Top Up Arrow