Students measuring beach litter using a quadrat made from string
Schools and community groups have measured the amount of beach litter to find out how big the problem is. St Kilda Earth Care picked up all the litter on their beach and recorded what they had picked up. In three years they picked up 41,247 pieces of rubbish. Most was from stormwater drains, but it included 725 fishing lines and hooks and 725 fish bait bags left behind by fishers. The most common litter was plastic bags. They also picked up 152 syringes.
Many schools don’t consider it safe for students to be picking up litter on beaches. The students in this photo are measuring the amount of litter without the need to touch it. You can find more information about the technique in the curriculum materials. This is what the students are doing to measure beach pollution: