In honor of Earth Day on April 22nd, Surfrider Foundation San Diego County and San Diego Coastkeeper unveil their 2023 Marine Debris Report.


In 2023, Coastkeeper and Surfrider rallied an inspiring 11,264 volunteers who removed 19,216 pounds of trash from our precious shores and inland waterways.


To commemorate this achievement, Coastkeeper and Surfrider invite San Diegans to celebrate the program’s success by participating in a joint beach and river cleanup on May 11th.

(See Link Below)

Since 2007, our collaborative beach cleanup program has removed over 147,193 pounds of debris from our local beaches and waterways. In 2023, we collected 300,002 individual pieces of trash across 268 different cleanup events.


Among the most common culprits were plastic fragments, EPS foam (a.k.a. Styrofoam) fragments, and cigarette butts. Cigarette butts have long been the top item found along San Diego’s coastlines and inland waterways, and for the first time, they no longer top the list. Plastic fragments dominated the cleanup landscape in 2023, representing over 20% of all pieces of trash found.


This highlights the need for additional policy work targetting unnecessary single-use plastics that commonly end up on our beaches and in the ocean, something San Diego Coastkeeper and Surfrider Foundation San Diego County are diligently working towards. A comprehensive breakdown of our cleanups, including detailed information and statistics, is in the 2023 Marine Debris Report.

Coastkeeper and Surfrider will host a joint cleanup event at Ocean Beach Dog Beach from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Saturday, May 11, in honor of River Day and the release of the 2023 data report.

Additionally, Coastkeeper and Surfrider host weekly cleanups from 9-11 a.m. on Saturday mornings, and volunteers are always welcome to join.


For additional cleanup dates and more information, visit or

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