Save Our Shores

Making Waves for Ocean Awareness. In the late 1970s, a small group of citizens joined together to resist offshore oil drilling in Central Coast waters. They won in 1978, and Save Our Shores was born. Today Save Our Shores still fights to keep oil out of our oceans—only now the threat comes from petroleum-based plastics, styrofoam, plastic bags and other trash that imperils fish, birds and marine mammals.

In three counties—Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Mateo—SOS channels the help of the community and thousands of local schoolchildren to successfully remove thousands of tons of cigarette butts, plastic pieces and trash from local beaches and waterways each year. SOS relies on donations from local individuals and businesses as well as volunteers to preserve our ocean paradise. SOS works with 9,000 volunteers each year. Interested individuals or groups can find out how to join the effort here.

Annual Coastal Cleanup Day is Save Our Shores' biggest cleanup effort of the year. During the 2013 event, 3,064 volunteers collected 17,147 pounds of trash and recycling from the Central Coast.

Beach cleanups are just the beginning. By keeping track of the debris collected on area beaches, SOS has created a formidable database for use in advocacy work. SOS was at the forefront of the movement to ban Styrofoam on Monterey Bay—something every jurisdiction save tiny Sand City has done. SOS has also tirelessly pushed a ban on single-use plastic bags in Santa Cruz and Monterey counties.

The Save Our Shores office is located on the south side of the Santa Cruz Harbor at:

345 Lake Ave
Santa Cruz, CA 95062

For further information, the SOS blog and events, visit the Save Our Shores website.

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