Coastal cleanup effort collects 9M tons of garbage - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Coastal cleanup effort collects 9M tons of garbage

Photo credit: David Guttenfelder/AP Photo credit: David Guttenfelder/AP

SAN FRANCISCO (WKOW) -- A conservation group says volunteers collected nearly 9 million pounds of trash from coastlines around the world during a cleanup campaign last year.

In a report released Tuesday, the Ocean Conservancy says the garbage was collected by nearly 600,000 volunteers who cleaned more than 20,000 miles of coastline on September 17 for the 2011 International Coastal Cleanup.

The top five types of trash found during the annual cleanup effort were cigarettes, plastic bottles, beverage lids, plastic bags and food containers.

According to the report, volunteers found 94,000 balloons, 267,000 items of clothing and 940,000 pieces of food packaging.

Group organizers say thousands of marine mammals, sea turtles and birds are injured or killed by ocean trash every year.

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