Four ocean advocates, including me, were chosen to join marine scientists in the wilds of Southeast Alaska for the Alaskan Coastal Expedition (ACE), which headed to Yakutat with Alaskan Brewery ’s ocean-health nonprofit Coastal CODE. Everyone along for the trip brought a unique environmental perspective and a love for oceans.
They awoke with the eagles to surf lonely, icy, reeling point breaks each morning, then led beach cleanups during the rainy afternoons. They collected tons of debris including fishing equipment, boating supplies, plastic bottles, and other trash for the Yakutat Salmon Board to catalog and use to educate fishermen.
Fishermen require a healthy ecosystem and thus are likely to pay attention to issues regarding trash at sea. But what about the plastic water bottle that floated over from Asia? How will people from across the world learn that their trash landed on a breathtaking beach in wild Alaska, hurting salmon, bears, eagles, and whales? Alaskan Brewing is hoping that the members of the Coastal Expedition can help answer that question. --Kathleen Egan, of the Alaskan Coastal Expedition