A Pacifica environmental group is taking measures to reduce the impact of Fourth of July fireworks remnants on beaches and marine wildlife.
The Pacifica Beach Coalition is holding a coastal cleanup at Rockaway Beach on Saturday from 9 to 11 a.m. The group is also organizing an informal cleanup later tonight, hoping to catch plastic and cardboard fireworks remnants at about 10 to 10:30 p.m., before high tide rolls in and sweeps the debris out to the ocean.
"Firework debris contain toxic chemicals that leach into the water posing an additional threat to wildlife," PBC President Lynn Adams said.
Local groups that sell legal fireworks in Pacifica will hold an organized cleanup Thursday morning at Linda Mar and Rockaway beaches.
The PBC will participate informally in the Thursday morning cleanup.
Such efforts are critical to protecting marine wildlife, Adams said.
"All the fireworks are very poisonous," she said. "All that plastic stuff goes into the ocean and fish ingest it and they die and birds eat it and they die."
The public is invited to join the PBC for their Saturday morning cleanup. Those interested in helping are urged to bring plastic gloves.
Adams said her group is not officially opposed to Pacifica's policy of selling legal fireworks or public fireworks shows, but asks that Pacifica residents to do what they can to protect the oceans from harmful debris by picking up fireworks remnants from the beaches and elsewhere. Fireworks remnants left on the streets will find their way out into the ocean waters too, she said.
"I like fireworks and I hope people enjoy themselves on the Fourth of July, we just want people to act responsibly," Adams said
"We need everyone to help minimize the harm of fireworks to the environment."