Fighting for Trash Free Seas®

Ending the flow of trash at the source

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2022 International Coastal Cleanup®

For more than 35 years, the International Coastal Cleanup® (ICC) has galvanized communities worldwide to collect trash that pollutes our waterways, making our coasts cleaner and our ocean healthier.

Join us for ICC following three easy steps:

1. Form Your Crew

Mauritius_credit Courtney Jenkins (9)
©  Natalie James
Want to protect our ocean from an environmental crisis? Good! Have a hometown buddy, friendly co-worker, a lifelong partner or beloved family member that feels the same way? Even better!

The International Coastal Cleanup is the perfect time to connect with your family and friends while helping to eliminate trash from marine environments. Whether you have a +1 or a +10, bring them along to help clean up during this ICC.

2. Find a Spot

With your newly formed cleanup crew, choose the best location to make a difference. From your favorite beach to a beloved park, any place is a good place to join the ICC. Trash travels, so even picking up litter off a city sidewalk can help protect wildlife and communities that depend on clean waterways. Learn how to conduct a safe clean up here.

Want to join an organized cleanup? We’ve got you covered! Use our map to see if a coordinator is planning a cleanup in your region. If there are no events near you, don’t worry! All you need to be a part of the ICC is Ocean Conservancy’s Clean Swell® app.

3. Clean Up

Mauritius_credit Courtney Jenkins (7)
© Dimitri Rault
Time to take on the trash! Grab your crew, go to your spot and become part of a global movement for our ocean. This is your time to help marine wildlife and the ecosystems they depend on!

Before you start your cleanup, make sure you download the Clean Swell app to record the trash you and your crew collect! By using Clean Swell®, you not only measure your squad’s cleanup impact but also help contribute data that can lead to new research and policy changes for our ocean! Download Clean Swell here.

8 Steps to Safely Conduct a Cleanup

Learn How to Plan a Solo or Small Group Cleanup

8 Steps to Safely Conduct a Solo or Small Cleanup


1. Pick a Location
Identify a safe location to clean where social distancing is easily achievable. Think ahead about where you will properly dispose of trash at the location you choose. Monitor your health and the health of your family members before considering a cleanup of any size.

2. Gather Materials
Gather materials needed. This includes proper Personal Protective Equipment (masks and gloves), hand sanitizer, grabbers, trash bags, closed-toed shoes and a reusable water bottle.

3. Download Clean Swell®
If you are able, please help us collect important data on the types and amount of trash you remove. Download the Clean Swell® application on your phone or other smart device. Be sure to “Allow” location services while using the app.

4. Clean Up
Safely collect trash using gloves, and take pictures to document your efforts. Never pick up any trash items that you are not comfortable with.

5. Carefully Remove Gloves
After you finish collecting items, carefully remove gloves and wash hands and arms with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

6. Record Data
Follow steps on the Clean Swell® app to review and submit your data. Data automatically submit to Ocean Conservancy’s database when you see a “Thank You!” screen.

7. Properly Dispose of Waste
Properly dispose of items collected. Do not place trash bags in overflowing bins. This may cause items to fly away and end up back in the water.

8. Sanitize
Immediately and thoroughly sanitize any gear used during the cleanup including grabbers, gloves and buckets.
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