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July 16, 2018
(DEP) (718) 595-6600
(DSNY) (646) 885-5020
(NYC PARKS) (212) 360-1311
(EPA) (212) 637-3660

“Clean Streets = Clean Beaches” Anti-littering Campaign Launches in Coney Island


Initiative Aims to Improve Cleanliness and Aesthetics of City Beaches by Reducing Littering on Streets and in Parks

Photos are Available on DEP’s Flickr Page

Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Vincent Sapienza, Sanitation Commissioner (DSNY) Kathryn Garcia, NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP, and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 2 Administrator Pete Lopez today launched “Clean Streets = Clean Beaches”, a public information campaign and beach clean-up program aimed at reducing littering and improving the cleanliness and aesthetics of New York City beaches. When it rains, trash and debris discarded on city streets and sidewalks can be washed down storm drains and end up on beaches. This summer, “Clean Streets = Clean Beaches” posters will be displayed at area beaches and on approximately 5,000 Sanitation vehicles citywide. The program was launched at MCU Park in Coney Island, home of the Brooklyn Cyclones.

“Throughout the summer, the city’s beautiful beaches, from Orchard Beach in the Bronx to Cedar Grove Beach on Staten Island, are choice destinations for New Yorkers looking to swim and sunbathe,” said DEP Commissioner Vincent Sapienza. “I’d like to take this opportunity to encourage all New Yorkers to pitch in, do their part and keep the beaches safe and clean. Do the right thing and put your trash where it belongs—in a litter basket, and not on the street.”

“The city’s incredible beaches are an asset we all must help preserve,” said Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia. “One way to help keep our beaches clean is to keep litter off the street. Litter on the street today can end up on the beach tomorrow. The Clean Streets = Clean Beaches partnership helps remind all New Yorkers to put litter in its proper place. We can look forward to a cleaner and more beautiful New York City when we all do our part.”

“New York’s fourteen miles of beaches are some of our city’s greatest assets, beloved by the millions of visitors who enjoy them every summer,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP. “Together with DSNY, DEP, EPA, and the Brooklyn Cyclones we are bringing attention to the link between litter on the streets that washes down storm drains and litter that washes up onto area beaches. Let’s all do our part to keep these treasured waterways clean and litter-free.”

“EPA Region 2, working with our partners in New York City government, began the Clean Streets = Clean Beaches campaign because beaches play an important role in the city’s environmental, cultural, and economic success,” said EPA Regional Administrator Pete Lopez. “We’re excited to continue to work with the city on this important outreach so that every New Yorker knows that they can make a personal and direct contribution to reducing the impacts of our trash on wildlife, people and the enjoyment of our beaches.”

The “Clean Streets = Clean Beaches” campaign began in the early 1990s to highlight the link between litter on the streets and trash found on area beaches. The 2018 program will utilize an informational poster with the slogan “don’t mess up summer” for display at area beaches as well as on Department of Sanitation fleet vehicles, which include approximately 450 mechanical brooms that sweep litter from more than 6,000 miles of streets per day. Additionally, the Department services more than 25,000 litter baskets daily.

DEP regularly inspects and cleans approximately 148,000 catch basins city-wide, which trap litter before it can make its way into the sewer line. DEP operates and maintains 23 booms and nets that drain over 60,000 acres and 58 sewer outfalls. These nets are serviced by four specialized skimmer vessels that collect trash and other debris that makes it through the catch basins, including wood, plastic, metal, rubber, and glass, before it enters local waterways. The total amount of trash and debris collected by the boom and skim program has dropped by 75 percent since 2010. DEP has also built litter control devices within sewer outfalls along the Bronx River, the Gowanus Canal, and Newtown Creek that use hydraulic bar screens and nylon netting systems to capture litter before it can pollute the waterways. DEP will also distribute collapsible, reusable water bottles at City beaches throughout the summer that people can use instead of disposable plastic bottles. For more information, visit, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

More Information

NYC Department of Environmental Protection
Public Affairs

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(718) 595-6600