San Nicolas Island, California (NNS) – The US Navy conducted an annual coastal cleanup on the remote beaches of San Nicolas Island (SNI), the most isolated of the California Channel Islands, located 65 miles offshore. Base Ventura County (NBVC) Point Mag.
The cleanup team, made up of nearly 50 volunteer Navy sailors and civilians assigned to the NBVC and Naval Air Warfare Center Ordnance Division, removed more than 2,000 pounds of trash and debris at three SNI beaches.
Home to the endangered Pacific Coast snow plover and usually covered in winter by northern elephant seals, the beach now empties seasonally and is surrounded by steep dramatic sand dunes and fine sea fog. is included.
“This is what the Navy found on these remote beaches,” said Gunner’s Mate Dylan Bernardi Second Class.
Bernardi read a list of items found on the beach and found World War II relics, clothing, commercial fishing gear (nets, buoys, traps, hooks), boat accessories (timber, ladders, anchors), bottles, Include plastic pieces, tires and barrels. , treated wood, toys and even shopping carts.
NBVC Natural Resources Manager Bill Heuer said: “If the Navy can collect an average of 4,000 pounds of trash (two beach cleanups each year) on California’s most remote islands, we know there is too much trash in the ocean.”
According to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, hundreds of marine species are adversely affected by marine debris worldwide, and ingestion can harm or kill animals, and can entangle and threaten habitats. Yes, marine debris can make navigation unsafe and even threaten human health.
“We have eliminated a large number of sources of microplastics,” said Cdr. Keith “Fudge” Buckingham, OIC, SNI. “Fishing nets, clothing, plastic bottles, etc. decompose when exposed to water and sunlight, creating toxic microplastics that are ingested by local marine life.”
A 2017 UN resolution discussed the dangers of microplastics and the need for regulation to reduce this danger to the oceans and human health.
“The Navy can continue to demonstrate that military missions and environmental stewardship can be met in tandem,” said NBVC Commander Capt. Robert “Barr” Kimnak III. “NBVC has a long tradition of engagement programs that promote community service and protect the environment while increasing public awareness and understanding of the U.S. Navy.”
The Navy transferred control of San Nicolas Island to NBVC on October 1, 2004.
NBVC includes Point Mag, Port Hueneme, San Nicolas Island, Pacific Coast Seabees, West Coast Hawkeyes, three war centers, and 80 tenants. We are the largest employer in Ventura County and actively protect California’s largest coastal wetland through our award-winning environmental programs.
This article was written by Ensign Drew Verbis, Ventura County Naval Station. Want to share your story?Contact information [email protected].