Coastal and Watershed Clean Up Events

One of the biggest threats to Pennsylvania’s waterways, the Great Lakes and to our oceans is the buildup of garbage and plastic, which damage freshwater and marine ecosystems and aquatic life. Annual clean up events are held in Pennsylvania and across the globe to help combat the increasing impacts, and Pennsylvania Sea Grant helps out by working with teachers, students, community groups, state agencies, and private industry to clean it up.

Along Pennsylvania's Lake Erie coastline and tributaries, PA Sea Grant helps to organize the Pennsylvania Lake Erie International Coastal Cleanup by recruiting and leading volunteers at designated clean up sites to collect debris. Our team coordinates neighborhood cleanups for students in grades K-12, to help clean up litter. The data about the amount and types of litter collected during these events in then shared with state environmental agencies and the Ocean Conservancy, who organizes the global "International Coastal Clean Up" initiative.  

Hours away, along the coastal Delaware River near Chester, PA, Pennsylvania Sea Grant works with Deloitte Consulting,a private company, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and others to organize a trash removal at Little Tinicum Island in the Delaware River.  During the June 2016 workday, 45 volunteers removed 8,000 pounds of trash and 1,400 pounds of recyclable materials from approximately seven acres along a half-mile stretch of the Delaware River shoreline in Pennsylvania. Since 2014, over 11,700 pounds of trash and 3,500 pounds of recyclables have been removed from the island and the Delaware River through this cleanup effort.  

Pennsylvania Sea Grant offers educational programs and materials to help educate residents about the detrimental impacts of plastic and debris. 

Get the latest about the 2017 Erie County International Coastal Cleanup details and Check out our photo gallery! 


Main Office: Tom Ridge Environmental Center 301 Peninsula Dr., Suite 3 Erie, PA 16505 814-217-9011