Grand Rapids, MI – In conjunction with the International Coastal Cleanup, Meijer is sponsoring two Adopt-a-Beach cleanup events on Sept. 17 and is encouraging public participation to help clean local beaches and keep plastic out of the Great Lakes.
"We're lucky to live in the beautiful Great Lakes, which is synonymous with summertime visits to the beach," said Erik Petrovskis, Director of Environmental Compliance and Sustainability at Meijer. "But with that use comes the responsibility to protect them. We're proud to be hands-on in the cleaning of our beaches and encourage the public to join other volunteers from around the world that day at similar cleanup events."
The events will be conducted by the Alliance for the Great Lakes, a nonpartisan nonprofit working across the region to protect the Great Lakes, at the following beaches:
- 9-11 a.m. at Traverse City State Park beach near downtown Traverse City, Mich.
- 9-11 a.m. at Headland Dunes State Park near Cleveland, Ohio
For more than 30 years, the Alliance's Adopt-a-Beach program has activated thousands of volunteers in cleanups across all five Great Lakes. They remove tens of thousands of pounds of litter, primarily plastic, from Great Lakes shorelines each year. This September, volunteers will help to surpass the Alliance's goal of collecting 500,000 pounds of litter since 2003, which is when the organization began tracking data.
"Adopt-a-Beach volunteers are on the frontlines of keeping plastic out of the Great Lakes. The data they collect shows that roughly 85 percent of the litter cleaned up are items made partly or entirely of plastic," Alliance for the Great Lakes President & CEO Joel Brammeier said. "September 17 is the single largest day of action for the Great Lakes each year. We're grateful to our volunteers and to Meijer for supporting this event and helping to keep our lakes clean and safe for everyone to enjoy."
Meijer began its partnership with the Alliance in 2019, sponsoring various beach cleanup events across its footprint.
It's the latest in a concerted effort the retailer is making to protect the Great Lakes and rid them of litter, specifically plastics. Earlier this month, Meijer was the first retailer to unveil innovative beach and water cleaning drones in the Great Lakes in partnership with the Council of the Great Lakes Region.