Pascagoula gearing up for Coastal Cleanup event

PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Thousands of people across South Mississippi will gather to clean up the streets, rivers and coastlines Saturday morning. In Pascagoula, Coastal Cleanup organizers said litter is a nasty problem.

Kristin Pummer and her kids are enjoying a day at the park eating and relaxing. This mom said she always makes sure they throw away their trash.

"It seems lazy for someone not to pick up after themselves," said Pummer.

Pascagoula Coastal Cleanup organizers Ann Burgo and Kristin Ducote couldn't agree more. They said littering is a bad habit that many need to break.

"You see a lot of cigarette butts, cans, plastic, those sorts of things," said Burgo.

"We have tons of litter on Nathan Hale Avenue. As you can see behind us, we have the I.G. Levy Lake and litter blows from the street into the lake," Ducote said.

Trash everywhere paints an ugly image of Pascagoula and is dangerous for the creatures in the water.

"Not to mention the pollution element and what it does to the wildlife when it gets into your water streams and things like that," Burgo said.

These women hope the coastal cleanup will encourage folks to take more pride in their communities and raise awareness about keeping streets and rivers clean.

"If they have a candy wrapper or a can, they will know not to throw it down and make sure it goes into the trash can," Ducote said.

Pummer said this is a valuable lesson she will continue to teach her little ones.

"A little bit of litter goes along way. If someone sees a bottle or cup on the ground, they will think that they can just throw stuff on the ground, and it adds up really fast. I want them to feel like it's important to clean up after themselves," Pummer said.

Last year, volunteers picked up trash at 68 sites in Hancock, Harrison and Jackson Counties along with the barrier islands. More than 55,000 pounds of trash were collected.

The Pascagoula cleanup is Saturday morning from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. The city is focusing on at least seven sites. For more information, call (228) 938-2356.

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