DVIDS – News – Here’s what the Navy found on an isolated beach


SAN NICOLAS ISLAND, Calif. (NNS) – The U.S. Navy conducted an annual shoreline cleanup on secluded beaches on San Nicolas Island (SNI), the most isolated of California’s Channel Islands, located sixty-five miles north wide and south of Naval Base Ventura County (NBVC) Point Mugu.

The cleanup team consisted of nearly fifty Navy volunteer sailors and civilians assigned to the NBVC and Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division, who removed more than two thousand pounds of trash and debris from three beaches. of the NIS.

Beaches that are home to the endangered Pacific Coast Snowy Plover and usually covered with northern elephant seals in winter are now seasonally vacant and flanked by dramatic steep dunes and fine sea mist .

“Here is what the Navy found on these remote beaches,” said Gunners Mate 2nd Class Dylan Bernardi.

Bernardi reads a list of items found on the beach, including WWII artifacts, clothing, commercial fishing gear (nets, buoys, traps, hooks), boat accessories (antlers, ladders, anchors ), bottles, pieces of plastic, tires, barrels, treated wood, toys and even a shopping cart.

“Look where we are,” said Bill Hoyer, natural resources manager, NBVC. “If the Navy can collect an average of four thousand pounds of trash (2 beach cleanups per year) on California’s most remote island, that tells us there’s too much trash in the ocean.”

According to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, hundreds of marine species worldwide have been negatively impacted by marine debris, which can injure or kill an animal when ingested, or entangle and threaten the habitats on which they depend. Marine debris can also interfere with safe navigation and potentially pose a threat to human health.

“We have removed a large number of sources of microplastic,” Cdr said. Keith “Fudge” Buckingham, ICO, SNI. “Things like fishing nets, clothing, and plastic bottles break down when exposed to water and sunlight, creating harmful microplastics that are ingested by local marine life.”

In 2017, a United Nations resolution discussed the dangers of microplastics and the need for regulations to reduce this danger in the oceans and to human health.

“The Navy can continue to demonstrate that the military mission and environmental stewardship can be accomplished in tandem,” said Capt. Robert “Barr” Kimnach III, commanding officer of NBVC. “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 is home to Point Mugu, Port Hueneme, San Nicolas Island, Pacific Coast Seabees, West Coast Hawkeyes, 3 War Centers and 80 tenants. It is Ventura County’s largest employer and actively protects California’s largest coastal wetlands through its award-winning environmental programs.

Date taken: 10.12.2022
Date posted: 10.12.2022 17:16
Story ID: 431164

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