earthA close-up view of planet Earth. (Click to enlarge)

Done2Here are some announcements of Earth Day activities scheduled for the next few days:

Earth Day Celebration at Red Bank Primary School

Got Earth Day plans? If not, please check out the Earth Day Exposition at the Red Bank Primary School on April 22nd.

Organized by Primary School teacher Christina Vlahos, with support from the Red Bank Green Team (of which Christina is a member), the event showcases student projects and demonstrations, educational opportunities, and local businesses and organizations.

Admission is free, of course, and the event runs from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

For those who don’t know the school, it is located at 222 River Street on the banks of the Swimming River.  With natural habitat areas, river views, and a building serviced by geothermal heat pump heating/cooling, it is truly a great site to host this sort of event.

Andres Simonson
Red Bank Environmental Commission and Green Team Chair


American Littoral Society Invites Public to Restore Sandy Hook Dunes for Earth Day

Sandy Hook-On Saturday, April 24 from 10 AM to 2 PM, the American Littoral Society will sponsor a dune restoration event to celebrate the 40th birthday of Earth Day. The public is invited to help restore dunes on Sandy Hook by removing invasive plants and planting American beach grass. Participants will include 600 kids from Monmouth County schools who have been growing beach grass in their classrooms and homes in preparation for the planting. Society educators will also lead informative dune walks throughout the event. This is an excellent opportunity to disconnect your family from high tech and reconnect with the outdoors-and to teach your kids about being better stewards of the earth.

American Littoral Society staff and volunteers will provide beach grass for planting and guidance about how and where to plant. This activity is suitable for people of all ages, including young children. The planting area was prepared in advance by student volunteers in Mrs. Boyd’s marine science classes at the Marine Academy of Science and Technology on Sandy Hook (M.A.S.T.) who removed invasive Asiatic sand sedge from the dune site.

The Society also needs volunteers aged 15 and up to help remove Asiatic sand sedge from an adjacent area and then replant with American beach grass. The Society will have tools on hand but volunteers are encouraged to bring their own work gloves and, if they have them, long-handled garden shovels. This invasive species has a deep root system that must be totally removed for the restoration to be successful.

Dune walks will leave from the site at 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, and 1:30.

Volunteers can come any time between 10 AM to 2 PM and should meet in Parking Lot B (Chokecherry), the first parking lot on the right. Look for the beach grass signs. For more information, visit <> or call 732-291-0055.

Support for this project was provided by the National Park Service and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Plant Materials Center. Funding was provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Stone Foundation of New Jersey, and the Mary Owen Borden Foundation.

About the American Littoral Society
The American Littoral Society is a member-based, coastal conservation, non-profit organization headquartered on Sandy Hook in Highlands, NJ. Since 1961 they have promoted the study and conservation of coastal marine life and habitat, defended the coast from harm, and empowered others to do the same through programs focused on education, conservation, and advocacy.


Citizens Called to Clean Storm-Littered Beaches – April 24th

Sandy Hook, NJ – Clean Ocean Action (COA) invites citizens and organizations to participate in the 25th Annual Spring Beach Sweeps on Saturday, April 24, 2010, at 69 sites along the New Jersey coast.  The Beach Sweeps begin at 9am and end at 12:30pm, rain or shine.

Clean Ocean Action Beach Sweeps is one of the longest running cleanup programs in the nation, and has resulted in the removal of nearly 4 million pieces of trash. More importantly, over 75,000 citizens, the small and the tall, have been educated about the harmful effects of litter and are motivated to make a difference. “The Beach Sweeps are an opportunity for citizens and visitors to give back to their local marine environment,” said Tavia Danch, COA’s Pollution Prevention Coordinator.

“The Beach Sweeps is much more than picking up trash, volunteers are also instructed to record the quantity and types of debris they find,” stated Danch.  The information collected at the Sweeps helps identify pollution problems, aid legislators in enacting laws to protect our marine environment, and inform local and international efforts to combat marine pollution.

“Clean Ocean Action is proud to celebrate the dedication and hard work of thousands of volunteers during our Beach Sweeps 25th Anniversary. Some participants have been volunteering for generations, caring for the ocean from toddlers to teenagers. The goal of the statewide cleanup is to have naturally clean beaches and to no longer need these events,” said Cindy Zipf, COA’s Executive Director.

“Polluted runoff from recent storms and flooding has trashed beaches, spurring outrage from citizens across the region who recently visited the Jersey Shore to enjoy some fun in the sun. This response has increased cleanup participation and we hope to inspire volunteers to continue to make a difference at future Sweeps and efforts, including “Keep us Free from LNG” and Clean Ocean Zone campaigns,” added Zipf.

COA encourages participation from volunteers of all ages individually or from businesses, families and organizations.  Groups of 10 or more are requested to pre-register by calling 732-872-0111, or using the online sign-up form on COA’s website.  Pre-registration for individuals or groups of less than 10 is not required.  Volunteers should bring gloves, dress for the weather, apply sunscreen, and wear closed-toed, hard-soled shoes.

Beach Captains will greet volunteers at each site, distribute cleanup materials, and give instructions throughout the event.  For a list of sites, the group sign-up form, and other tips, visit and follow the links for “Beach Sweeps.” Organic cotton Beach Sweep t-shirts will be provided to volunteers on a first come-first serve basis.

A number of businesses partner with COA to sponsor the Beach Sweeps.  The Statewide Sponsors for the 2010 Beach Sweeps are Aveda, Bank of America, Comcast, and Verizon.  The South Jersey sponsor is Atlantic City Electric. Additional sponsorships include:  Bayshore Recycling, Brook 35 & West, Monmouth County Realtors Association, New Jersey American Water, New Jersey Natural Gas, Patagonia, United Teletech Financial, and Wakefern ShopRite. Individual site sponsors include: Surfrider Foundation, Jersey Shore Chapter for Deal; NuStar Energy for Keansburg; Enterprise Rent-A-Car for Sandy Hook; Adventure Aquarium for Ventnor City; and Lower Cape May Regional Education Association for Wildwood Crest. In-kind support provided by Becton, Dickinson and Company, Clif Bar, IHOP Neptune & Keyport, and Wakefern ShopRite.

As a tribute to 25 years of Beach Sweeps, Captains, and Sweepers, COA has published the Journal of Citizen Action Against Beach Litter.  The Journal will highlight data and trends in ocean pollution and educate the public on ways to reduce ocean pollution.  The Journal is available online at


Celebrate Earth Day 2010 at Poricy Park

MIDDLETOWN – Celebrate Earth Day by participating in the 4th Annual Earth Day Clean-up at the Poricy Park Conservancy on Saturday, April 24 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Local families and community volunteers are invited to help remove cans, bottles, plastics, tires and more from historical and recent dumping sites along Poricy Brook, in the Poricy Park Cotton Tract and the Poricy Park Fossil Beds. The event, organized by Brookdale Water Watch and Monmouth University’s Energy Service Corps, will help bring the community together to recognize the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day in an effort to protect our most precious resource for future generations!

It’s recommended that participants wear sunscreen, work or garden gloves, hard-soled shoes and clothes that can get muddy as this event is rain or shine. Meet at the Nature Center. Poricy Park is located at 345 Oak Hill Road. Call 732-842-5966 for more information.