Sustainable Coastlines

Sustainable Coastlines

Since early 2008 Sustainable Coastlines have successfully motivated volunteers to remove huge hauls of rubbish from coastlines around New Zealand and the Pacific. During this time they’ve raised large-scale awareness about the challenges the marine environments face and the simple solutions to look after our coastlines. Via direct participation, wide-reaching media exposure and public advertising campaigns, as well as through educational presentations to tens of thousands of school students, businesses and community groups.

In December 2010 a new ongoing project was develop called Love your Coast that launched with massive clean-up events around the country involving over 5,500 people. This resulted not only in the removal of tonnes of rubbish from our coastlines, but in the establishment of our free event planning tool and network ( that helps anyone running their own coastal clean-up to plan and promote their event.

Since the launch of Love your Coast dozens of coastal clean-up events have been independently created and schools have begun to adopt what they learned from the experience into their existing ongoing curriculum. They share their experience and knowledge more widely in New Zealand through educational presentations and events.

They focus on simple, positive, grass roots actions that combine hands-on learning with fun in a setting that everyone loves. By doing so attract a vast cross-section of volunteers to their events and have quickly gained a large and highly engaged following. Increasing the effectiveness of their operations in all areas. To achieve this they will:
•Coordinate wider-reaching, more holistic projects.
•Train more volunteers to spread our activities and messages far and wide.
•Get into more schools (through educational presentations and development of resources for the New Zealand school curriculum).
•Secure further regional, national and international media exposure.
•Create more effective public awareness campaigns.

Purpose: Coastal clean-up operations
Their activities reduce the human impact on the environment primarily through the removal of non-biodegradable waste. Their coastal clean-up projects make much more than a visual difference to the coast: they create awareness of important environmental problems, involve local communities, and provide an inspiring and educational event.

Advancement of education
Education is their major charitable focus and we work hard to ensure that learning is passed on throughout all of our activities. Their events aim to advance this education through hands-on learning, where participants develop a real understanding of our impact on the environment and ways in which we can reduce this. Their educational work extends to all sectors of the community and they have delivered educational presentations on the challenges of marine pollution to schools, businesses, community groups, governmental departments and community probation service workers.

Promoting sustainable revenue practices
They promote sustainable revenue practices, taking a holistic view of the environment. These are projects aimed at increasing the sustainability of community resources. They achieve this by providing such projects with volunteers, funding, consultation, events and comparative analysis. An example of one such sustainable revenue practice is the activity of planting waterways to reduce farm nutrient run off, while enhancing the water quality that flows through streams and into the coastal environment.

Sustainable Coastlines love New Zealand coasts (and others) and work really hard to keep them beautiful. They coordinate and support large-scale coastal clean-up events, educational programs, public awareness campaigns and riparian planting projects. They help groups run their own events. Through these efforts they motivate volunteers and communities around Aotearoa and the Pacific to look after the beaches and rivers we love.
54,200 Event Participants
158,923 Presentation Views
1,188,523 Litres of rubbish
45,432 Trees planted

I have worked with Oliver Vetter from Sustainable Coastlines in Wellington for a few projects in Wellington city and admire the work they do tremendously. They have a great positive impact on the children they reach and do such important work in the community. His passion and hard work are inspiring and they are constantly busy throughout the year. Nationally they do a tremendous amount of education around New Zealand and have loads of fun doing it!

Nominated by: Wendy Bertholet, Waste Operations, Wellington City Council on 13 December 2017

Note: NZAEE Seaweek is not responsible for the accuracy of the information supplied by the person nominating the Ocean Champion nominee.

See all the Seaweek 2017 Ocean Champion nominees here.

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