IN AN EFFORT to preserve the natural beauty of California’s coastline, the counties of Marin, Sonoma and Mendocino counties launched an initiative to tackle beach litter.

Made in partnership with the Leave No Trace organization, the Cleaner California Coast initiative aims to reduce beach litter by reminding coastal visitors to do their part in keeping the coastline clean.

An estimated 10 million visitors visit the tri-county area’s coastal destinations each year, according to the initiative’s data. But with the area’s popularity also comes a growing litter problem — last year alone, 55,000 pounds of litter were picked up around sensitive environmental areas along the area’s coastline.

“The intercounty cooperation of Cleaner California Coast is remarkable.”

Supervisor Dennis Rodoni

In recognition that trash does not adhere to county lines, the counties unified with park districts, conservation groups and tribal governments to promote cleaner visitor practices that they call the “Leave No Trace principles” — Bring Reusables (and refuse single-use plastics), Find a Restroom (Know Before You Go), Pack It Out and Hang On To Your Cigarette Butts.

“The intercounty cooperation of Cleaner California Coast is remarkable,” said Marin County Supervisor Dennis Rodoni, the District 4 Marin County supervisor who initiated the collaboration in 2022.

“That all of these stakeholders from the three counties are committed to communicating uniform messaging along the Northern California coastline is powerful. It not only reduces competing messaging — which can obscure clarity for visitors — but it greatly increases the likelihood of visitors being exposed to these important principles,” he added.

Residents are encouraged to take part in the following upcoming clean-up events: a beach clean-up at Sonoma County’s Doran Regional Park on Aug. 12 from 9 a.m. to noon, a beach clean-up at Mendocino County’s Hare Creek on Aug. 12 from 10 a.m. to noon and Marin County’s Coastal Clean Up Day on Sept. 25 from 10 a.m. to noon.