Cancun, Q.R. — Volunteers took to the island of Contoy just off the mainland of Cancun Sunday where they removed more than 260 tons of garbage.
On the island’s 12th anniversary as a bird sanctuary, 45 volunteers cleaned the coast of the island where officials say 264 tons of garbage was removed from both land and sea.
Personnel from Aquaworld and Yeyen Sailing Away, the Network of Environmental Educators of Quintana Roo and the Ocean Conservancy took part in the annual island clean.
During the 3-hour pick up, volunteers made their way along sandbanks and cliffs where they retrieved items such as plastic caps and bottles as well as plastic bags and plastic sandals.
The volunteers scoured the Las Cruces beach where most of the garbage that reaches the island arrives by marine currents. A majority of the stranded island garbage arrives from passing US and Caribbean cruise ships.
Isla Contoy is part of the Contoy National Park and is a protected natural area, where access to tourism is controlled to a maximum of 200 visitors per day. The island is a famous starting point for whale shark watching for Cancun and Riviera Maya.
The annual volunteer clean up was organized by Delphinus.