Since 2014 Council has collaborated with several partner organisations to host the annual Clean Up for the Hatchlings event across 19 Sunshine Coast locations.

The annual event is always well supported by the community with several hundred volunteers taking part to help remove rubbish. Less rubbish on the beach and in our waterways is good for our environment, our wildlife and our turtle hatchlings.

The 2021 event, a partnership with Reef Check Australia, Unitywater, SEA LIFE Trust and the Clean Water Group to deliver the event, was attended by almost 700 volunteers. Volunteers helped to remove more than 500 kilograms of rubbish from our beaches and waterways. 

The amount of litter collected over the past few years at this annual event has continued to go down. It is hoped this is a sign of less rubbish entering our waterways.

When marine turtles are in their post-hatchling stage they float to the surface and eat everything around them. This can mean that as well as eating plankton and little jellyfish, they can also eat a lot of plastic. By cleaning up rubbish from our waterways and beaches, and reducing litter in general, we’re helping the survival rates of these hatchlings and other marine wildlife.

Following the clean-up activities, hundreds of volunteers enjoyed a free barbecue, activities, speakers and more at La Balsa Park in Buddina where they also weighed and sorted the debris collected, contributing to the Australian Marine Debris Initiative (AMDI) database.

Groups nation-wide input their information into the AMDI database, recording the location, quantities and types of marine rubbish collected, to give an overview of the impact on beaches across the country.

By entering data into the Australian Marine Debris Initiative database, it helps government and the community come up with solutions to reduce rubbish at the source so it doesn’t end up at the beach and in our oceans in the first place.