Top 10 marine trash items collected globally (2015 Ocean Conservancy Report)

In 2014, International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) saw more than 560,000 volunteers remove more than 7,000 tonnes of trash along 20,000km of beaches and inland waterways in 91 countries. The global top ten items collected were single-use plastic items. See the report here.

 www oceanconservancy org our work marine debris 2015 data release 2015 data release pdf pdf

Our World Water Day Celebration at Sungei Pandan Mangrove!


21 Mar 2015 – 41 participants from all over Singapore came together to commemorate Singapore World Water Day with a Mangrove Cleanup at Sungei Pandan. Covering some 100m along the mangrove, we picked up 42 bags of trash, consisting of 283 kg of trash and 7,785 pieces of trash.

Top of the charts were plastic bags, with 3,719 pieces and second was 1,124 pieces of foam pieces (expanded polystyrene or EPS) which were collected and disposed.

Despite the threat of bad weather and a lost bus driver at the Kent Ridge pick-up point, the cleanup went smoothly and we wrapped up operations before the storm blew in! It was a heartening sight to seeing so many individuals from all around Singapore come together with the shared goal of removing whatever trash we could from the mangrove, inspiring Kai Scene to blog immediately after the cleanup!

WWD1Here’s Liz, who has been actively participating in ICCS events for awhile now!


Our youngest participant at 6 years old found something to bring home from the mangroves!
This is the “reuse” part of the “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”


Some of our participants sank deep in the mud
and struggled to remove their wellys after the cleanup!

Sungei Pandan was heavily polluted in the 90’s, and when ICCS began operations in 2008, volunteers removed high loads of accumulated trash, typically collecting over a tonne in 90 minutes. In more recent years, even as plastics and styrofoam continue to be recruited into the habitat, the overall situation has improved tremendously with just a third of a tonne of trash removed in the last two cleanups!

In 2012 you can see how a low load of plastics can still dominate the landscape – Lim Cheng Puay, the ICCS South Zone Captain remembers this well.

Pandan 2012 (cp) 02 Pandan 2012 (cp) 01

Coastal cleanups should not have to be necessary. Our Saturday cleanup reminded us its critical for us to reflect on our day-to-day practices and adopt more sustainable alternatives. Simple things, like questioning whether we truly need that plastic straw in our teh-ping or milo-ping the next time we’re at the coffeeshop or hawker centre – we collected 362 straws and stirrers that Saturday. We use these for a mere 10 minutes, before disposal. With so many, some get into our marine environment to leach plastics and persist for a long time.


Thank you to everyone who came down to fight the good fight, and a big thank you to those who stayed to wash gloves and help with logistics!

Until the next cleanup!

ICCS in Sep 2014: 3,131 volunteers, 64 organisations, 57 coastal sites – so far!

As of now, 64 organisations have registered 3,131 volunteers to collect count, categorise and remove marine trash from 57 coastal sites around Singapore for the International Coastal Cleanup Singapore on or close to Saturday 13th September 2014.

Of the registered Organisations, 41% are from schools (including tertiary), 31% are corporate groups, 20% are NGO or volunteer groups and 8% are government entities.

Thanks for caring for the environment.

Next: our Workshop in July!

See the ICCS Status page for details.

  1. Advantest Singapore Pte Ltd
  2. Alpha Phi Omega Alumni Association Singapore
  4. Beatty Beaver Scout Group
  5. Black & Veatch (SEA) Pte Ltd
  6. BP Maritime Services Singapore Pte Ltd
  7. Brown University Alumni
  8. College of Alice and Peter Tan
  9. Compassvale Sec. School
  10. Crescent Girls’ School
  11. Earthlink NTU
  12. Environmental Resources Management
  13. FMC Technologies Singapore Pte Ltd
  14. HGST Singapore Pte. Ltd.
  15. Hougang Secondary School
  16. Hypertherm (S) Pte Ltd
  18. IRAS
  19. Jurong Secondary School
  20. Jurong Spring CC Youth Executive Committee
  21. Land Transportation Authority
  22. Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore
  23. Mitsui & Co. (Asia Pacific) Pte. Ltd
  24. MOE, Bedok South Secondary School
  25. MOM
  26. Nanyang Girls’ High School
  27. Nanyang Polyechnic GEO Council
  28. National University Of Singapore Environmental Science and Engineering Students’ Club
  29. Nature Society (Singapore)
  30. Naval Base Secondary School
  31. North Vista Secondary School
  32. Northland Primary School
  33. Northvista Secondary
  34. NPS International School
  35. NUS BES ENV2101 Class
  36. NUS High School of Math and Science
  37. NUS USP
  38. OFS (overseas family school)
  39. Oil Spill Response Limited
  40. Oscar & Friends
  41. Pacific Refreshments Pte Ltd
  42. People’s Association
  43. Queensway Secondary School
  44. Raffles Girls’ School
  45. Raffles Museum Toddycats
  46. Red Circle Helpline
  47. Renesas
  48. Republic Polytechnic
  49. SATO Asia Pacific Pte Ltd
  50. Sentosa Development Corporate
  51. ShinnyoEn Singapore
  52. Singapore American School
  53. Singapore Pools
  54. Spectra Secondary School
  55. ST Dynamics
  56. Starbucks Coffee Singapore
  57. Sukyo Mahikari Singapore
  58. Tata Consultancy Services
  59. Temasek Polytechnic
  60. The Fox Scout Group
  61. Waterways Watch Society
  62. Wildlife Reserves Singapore
  63. Woodlands Ring Secondary School
  64. YTL PowerSeraya Pte Ltd

Announcing the International Costal Cleanup 2014 Report by Ocean Conservancy – “Turning the Tide on Trash”

From Ocean Conservancy,

“The Ocean Trash Index presents state-by-state and country-by-country data about ocean trash collected and tallied by volunteers around the world on one day each fall during Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup®.

Volunteers have collected data since 1986, and the numbers are used to raise awareness, identify hotspots for debris or unusual trash events, and inform policy solutions.

Cleanups alone can’t solve this pollution problem. Nevertheless, the Ocean Trash Index provides a snapshot of what’s trashing our ocean so we can work to prevent specific items from reaching the water in the first place.”

Click to download “Turning the Tide on Trash, 2014 Report”

2014_ICC_Report.pdf (page 1 of 28)

More than 1,500kg of trash cleared at Kranji East mangrove – data, blog posts and photo albums from ICCS 2013

The Kranji East mangrove cleanup was a motivating effort with many determined people coming together to do their bit for nature. Almost 150 people responded to the call and cleared more than 1,500kg of trash from this shoreline.

nw-kre_6592_image003.png 1,490×684 pixels

The event generated quite a number of blog posts, which is simply lovely!

  • Joelle Lai’s pictorial, Raffles Museum News/Toddycats, 24 Sep 2013
  • Toddycat Jocelyne Sze’s busy day! Nature Rambles, 23 Sep 2013
  • Clarence the Independent joined us! klairens, 21 Sep 2013
  • Toddycat Germaine’s muddy blog! The Living Fossil, 22 Sep 2013.
  • Pearlynn’s cigarette lighter reflections! Reflections on Nature, 21 Sep 2013
  • Liyana’s fourth coastal cleanup! Caryota Confessionals, 21 Sep 2013

And there are photo albums too:

  • Photo Album 1 – link
  • Photo Album 2 – link
  • Photo Album 3 – link

The ICC 2013 Report has arrived! “Working for Clean Beaches and Clean Water”

The 2012 Ocean Trash Index which is the compilation of data and reports from the 2012 international cleanups is now available.

“The Ocean Trash Index presents state-by-state and country-by-country data about ocean trash collected and tallied by volunteers around the world on one day each fall during Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup®.”

You can download a copy of the 2012 results now!


Tracking Trash: 25 Years of Action for the Ocean (ICC Report 2011)

Washington, DC: Ocean Conservancy is releasing today a new report titled “Tracking Trash: 25 Years of Action for the Ocean.” This milestone report compiles data and stories about trash in the ocean, known as marine debris, for every participating state and country, collected from 2010 and as well as 25 years of International Coastal Cleanups—the largest volunteer effort for the ocean.

The report also highlights solutions from individuals to inspire behavior change and from companies to accelerate product innovation.

With this report, Ocean Conservancy is expanding its efforts from an annual cleanup day to a year round campaign for “Trash Free Seas”.

“Images of entangled birds, turtles choking on plastic bags and floating trash have become all too familiar,” said Vikki Spruill, President and CEO of Ocean Conservancy. “You name it, we have found it on the beach and in the water. We find beach litter like cigarette butts and plastic bags, toilet seats, washing machines, abandoned fishing gear—even the proverbial kitchen sink.”

“For twenty-five years we have watched as trash has threatened ocean wildlife and ecosystems; and undermined tourism and economic activity. We’ve seen more trash to clean up, but we’ve also seen more people inspired to be part of the solution.”

“Our vision is for Trash Free Seas,” said Spruill. “This problem is preventable, and keeping our ocean free from trash is one of the easiest ways we can make the ocean more resilient. From product design to trash disposal, we all have a role to play.”

Highlighted Findings from 2010 Coastal Cleanups

  • During the 25th annual Cleanup in 2010, over six hundred thousand (615,407) people removed more than eight million (8,698,572) pounds of trash.
  • In 2010, volunteers collected enough tires to outfit almost fifty-five hundred (5,464) cars.
  • In 2010 the amount of cigarettes/cigarette butts collected is equal to nearly ninety-five thousand (94,626) packs of cigarettes.
  • The eight million pounds of trash collected during the 2010 Cleanup would cover about 170 football fields.

Highlighted Results from the Past 25 Years of Cleanups

  • Fifty-three million cigarettes/cigarette filters that have been found would fill 100 Olympic-size swimming pools.
  • Appliances collected over 25 years of Cleanups (117,356) would fill 32,600 dump trucks.
  • Over 863 thousand (863,135) diapers would be enough to put one on every child born in the UK last year.
  • Over the past 25 years, more than eight and a half million (8,763,377) volunteers have removed one hundred and forty-five million (144,606,491) pounds of trash in 152 countries and locations.
  • Volunteers have collected enough cups, plates, forks, knives and spoons over 25 years to host a picnic for 2 million people.

Ocean Conservancy is building a new Trash Free Seas Alliance to bring people together to find solutions. Ocean Conservancy welcomes industries, communities and governments to collaborate on innovative ways to secure a future of Trash Free Seas.

Graphics, photos and video for media reports are available at