Successful Mo’omomi Beach Clean-up
By Maria Angst, Community Reporter
In a collective effort to safeguard the island’s pristine coastline, Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii (SCH) spearheaded a dynamic cleanup at Moʻomomi Beach on Molokai on August 12. The event saw participation from more than 30 community members, resulting in the removal of hundreds of pounds of debris from this remote shoreline.
According to the SCH press release, the removed debris encompassed a variety of materials, such as ghost nets, microplastics, mesoplastics, oyster spacers, hagfish traps, single-use plastic products, ghost net fragments, and plastiglomerates – a combination of melted plastic and natural elements fused together. Furthermore, SCH, in collaboration with Puʻu O Hoku Ranch, embarked on an additional mission to cleanse another remote coastline near Mo’omomi as well. Plans are currently underway to airlift the collected debris out of the area via helicopter.
However, this wasn’t the only instance of SCH’s commitment to environmental preservation during the past week. The SCH (Re)Learning Team undertook an educational campaign across the island with visits to Molokai schools and hundreds of students, offering immersive lessons on subjects such as the historical implications of plastic pollution, the dire consequences of unchecked large-scale plastic production, and practical solutions that students can incorporate into their daily lives.
“What we found on our neighbor island was a unified sentiment. There was helplessness through grief coupled with a want to contribute,” said Rafael Bergstrom, executive director of SCH, reflecting on the context of having the clean-up following the Maui fires, as well as the resilience of the Molokai community and its commitment to environmental stewardship.
“In the end, as we cleaned Moʻomomi, talked story with community leaders, and gathered each night together, we found purpose in our efforts.”