Naked Ocean tackles marine debris along our beaches

A group of scuba divers and beach goers from the Sutherland Shire have started an environmental movement aimed at ridding our ocean of all pollution.

Naked Ocean’s goal is to keep the ocean completely free of all marine debris and make Bate Beaches plastic-free.

Kirsten McLaren, a shire marine and environmental scientist founded the movement earlier this year while she was working as a scuba diver Instructor.

“Seeing the amount of marine debris walking down to every dive site was disheartening,” McLaren said.

“Hearing how equally upset my students were, I knew I had to do something.

“I had always wanted to start up a clean up group or NGO but didn’t think I had the means.

“I had always had this idea of a completely naked ocean - naked from all plastic pollution and from there the idea just kind of exploded.

“Naked Ocean is a group that clean the beach either on shore or diving in the water.

Some of the marine debris collected during a recent clean-up operation at Cronulla. Picture: Naked Ocean

Some of the marine debris collected during a recent clean-up operation at Cronulla. Picture: Naked Ocean

“Being a fresh group we are currently changing location for each clean so we can gather information on problem areas within Cronulla.”

McLaren said through sorting and identifying each bit of rubbish the group was hoping to outline the specific types of marine/coastline debris found within each area.

“From there we can than take appropriate action to target these areas within our local community.

“We will be posting the accumulative data on our website as well as the amount of dollars we have earned through the return and earn scheme, showing the benefits of recycling.”

Naked Ocean members at a recent clean-up operation. Picture: Naked Ocean

Naked Ocean members at a recent clean-up operation. Picture: Naked Ocean

Long-term the group wants to see Cronulla become completely plastic free by getting as many people involved as well as local businesses to take a pledge and ditch plastic. 

Short-term Naked Ocean is conducting local cleans and gather operations as much information as possible while also putting on other events to raise awareness.

“Ideally our hopes is to create a plastic free Cronulla and we can’t do that on our own so we would love help from as many people as possible,” McLaren said.

The group is open to people of all ages and welcomes new members.

  • Details: nakedocean.org