Science clubs clean Long Wharf Beach
Members of the Biology Club, Geographic Environment and Marine Sciences Club, Biotechnology Club and more, gathered for the first time on Saturday, May 4 to clean Long Wharf Beach in New Haven.
Long Wharf, located off Exit 91, is home to a theater, cultural food trucks and a historic schooner (a type of boat) called “Quinnipiack.” Along the sand, shores and rocky beach students said they found objects from shirts and styrofoam to blunts and heroin needles.
“It’s kinda sad that people come out here on the beach and expect it to be clean but are stepping on a whole bunch of different trash,” said freshman social work major Jurea McIntosh.
Biology major Syrenitee Kee, a freshman said she and others cleaned up the beach two weeks prior, only for her to return to it looking the same way it had been before. She said there is no real reason to pollute the environment and it is simple enough to throw a piece of garbage where it belongs: in the garbage.
According to The Guardian, climate scientists have warned there are only twelve years left until the Earth’s damage is irreversible. Once global warming surpasses its maximum limit of 1.5 degrees Celsius, the article stated, even the slightest increase in temperature will significantly intensify the possibility of droughts, floods and extreme heat.
“[Most people] don’t realize that we should’ve been doing all this stuff a long time ago,” said social work major Arabelle Ebnoti, a freshman said. “Now that [those same people] think the world is ending they want to make a difference, but it’s too late.”
While it may be “too late,” McIntosh said that does not mean people should refrain from doing anything to help. Helping clean the beaches or any polluted area, she said, helps one to feel good about themselves. It does not hurt to come out and clean, and it allows a person to give back to the environment, she said.
Since Kee studies to become a marine biologist, she said she wants to help clean up and reduce pollution for the sake of the animals.
It is nice to know, she said, that she can help prevent them from getting caught in plastic or swallowing something hazardous.
Despite the abundance of food trucks on the beach, there were no places for beach-goers to put their trash, except on the beach.
Kee said if the operators know food will be served, they should have a place to put the trash, or else people will feel obligated to put it wherever they please.
“Find a garbage, it’s not that hard,” she said. “They need to realize the consequences that we’re facing, and we shouldn’t have to come out and clean up after other people. They just shouldn’t be [littering] in the first place.”
Computer science major Jared Valde, a freshman said people need to start making a change. He said it does not take much to make a difference, and recommended that people recycle, compost and abstain from littering.
“It’s the little things that count,” said Valdes. “Save the Earth.”
Photo Credit: Will Aliou