Beach Cleanup – Individuals

Beach cleanups are an opportunity to see first-hand the rubbish that is washing up or being littered on our coastlines and take an immediate act to make a positive difference.

Beach cleanups are a great catalyst for change!

Join our Community Beach Cleanup Events or organise your own cleanup.

A beach cleanup doesn’t need to take a huge chunk of your day and it doesn’t need to be an organised event either. Every piece of rubbish removed makes a difference, even 5 minutes spent collecting littered rubbish on the beach or in the streets on your way to work or school can make a difference.

PFS/DB Green Community Beach Cleanups

For the safety of yourself and other volunteers, all volunteers must wear a mask and must be minimum double vaccinated to attend our community beach cleanup events. 

We are pleased to partner with Handson Hong Kong for our monthly community beach cleanups in DB. To join our cleanups as a volunteer, please sign up at www.handsonhongkong.org  

As always, we encourage you to bring reusable bottles and food containers for snacks. Please refrain from single-use items, including food and beverage containers, and disposable rain coats, etc. 

Community Beach Cleanup Schedule

The PFS Community Beach Cleanup programme enables individuals, families and school students the opportunity to make a positive difference to the beaches and the sea.

Whether you want to participate because it is a fun, social and meaningful way to spend time with family and friends or for a bit of purposeful exercise, or for students to help fulfil extracurricular requirements, we welcome your help and support.

PFS supplies washable and reusable cotton gloves (you are also welcome to bring your own), trash bags (for landfill and for recycling) and first aid.

Note that for volunteers who sign up ahead of time, if you are travelling to and from Central on the ferry, a discounted ferry ticket can usually be arranged. All information will be shared once you have successfully signed up with Handson Hong Kong.

Note: Future dates may change – please recheck the website prior to the event.

We ask that you wear appropriate clothing for the weather and closed-toe shoes that protect your feet, as there are hazards such as broken glass, and bring a full reusable water bottle.

If a school or community group would like to participate in a beach cleanups please contact us.

If your company would like to participate in a beach cleanup, please follow the link to learn more about the corporate programme.

Looking forward to seeing you on the beaches this year!

DB Community Beach Cleanup Locations

There are two locations which we clean near Discovery Bay: Sam Pak Wan and Nim Shue Wan / Cheung Sha Lan

Nim Shue Wan/ Cheung Sha Lan
Nim Shue Wan is a 5-minute walk from the ferry pier and main bus station. Turn left out of the ferry pier to reach the main road. (The bus station is next to the main road.) Turn left on the main road and walk a few mins until the road forks. Cross the road. The entrance to the beach is through the gate behind the security hut. Cheung Sha Lan is a further 10 min walk.

Sam Pak Wan (SPW) (next to the North Plaza)
SPW is accessible via internal bus (T4,T9) from the main DB bus station which is next to the ferry pier, and via external bus from Sunny Bay, to the North Plaza. From Tung Chung, alight at the first stop after the DB tunnel. It’s a 5-min walk through another tunnel to the North Plaza. Walk a few mins left along the waterfront to find the path to the beach.

How To Organise Your Own Beach Cleanup Event

Where to Start

1. Choose a date, time and location

For many people 60-90 minutes is enough for this physical activity, especially if it is a hot day.

Choose a beach preferably that is not cleaned daily by the government contractors. This will be classed as a non-gazetted beach. Check the Clean Shorelines event page to see what cleanups are already taking place and to find more information.

You can find potential beach locations on Clean Shorelines’ event page, or Hong Kong Cleanup’s website.

Do a site visit to check accessibility, safety, rubbish load & to make a plan for rubbish collection. (See below)

2. Check the tides

Check the Hong Kong Observatory for tide levels. Low tide (less than 1.5m and decreasing) is best for a beach cleanup.   

3. Register your event & get prepared

Let Clean Shorelines of the Environmental Protection Department (and everyone else) know about your event. You can obtain gloves and rubbish bags for your event as well as arrange for rubbish bag collection through them. Contact Clean Shorelines:

By phone: 2594 6578

Email: [email protected]

Be sure to read the Advice and Safety Instructions to the right.

Make a plan for the rubbish collection.

During your site visit, locate the nearest bins (rubbish and recycling) as you may be able to leave the rubbish in or near the bins, and the recycling in the recycling bins. It is easier to have different coloured bags to differentiate recycling from general waste. If it is an isolated beach without bins, make a plan before the event for where to put the rubbish awaiting collection by the government. When you contact Clean Shorelines of the Environmental Protection Department to let them know about your cleanup, they can inform you where to leave your rubbish. If they tell you to leave them on the beach, leave the bags tied closed, and well above the high tide line. They will not pick up the recycling, only the waste.

4. Make it Fun!

Competitions are a great way to spur interest. Who will collect the most rubbish? What was the strangest beach find? Guess the amount of bottle caps on the beach?

Bring a first aid kit for any minor cuts or scrapes, bites or stings. Include extra sunscreen and insect repellent.

Download the Beach Cleanup Planning Guide below

Advice & Safety Instructions

Do’s

  • Wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes. No slippers or sandals
  • Wear appropriate clothing for the weather. Jeans are generally NOT appropriate unless it is quite cool.
  • Wear loose, comfortable  layers so you can add and remove as appropriate
  • Wear a hat and bring sun-block
  • Bring insect repellent
  • Bring plenty of water in a reusable bottle. Drink before you are thirsty to prevent dehydration
  • Take regular breaks in the shade if it’s hot
  • Always use gloves to pick up things. Be aware of what you are touching
  • Take care of your back! Bend your knees when lifting heavy objects, and if it’s too heavy, leave it
  • If there is lightning, stop cleaning immediately and seek shelter
  • Carefully remove broken glass, fishing hooks, syringes and other sharp objects. They should placed somewhere safe for disposal (i.e. a box or bottle where they won’t be accidentally touched – we have a special container). Children shouldn’t handle the above items – inform an adult
  • Re-use when you can. Use bags or boxes that you find on the beach to hold trash or bring bags from home to reuse.
  • Bring along a first aid kit (not necessary for Plastic Free Seas organised events)

Don’ts

  • Do not throw out natural items (driftwood and sticks, shells, dead fish, seaweed, etc.)
  • Do not take shells from the beach. They could be future homes for sea animals.
  • Do not disturb the wildlife
  • Don’t leave anything on the beach that wasn’t there before you arrived. Don’t add to the litter!
  • Don’t touch oil drums. Let us know and we can have them removed.
  • Be careful when emptying out bottles of liquid. If you are certain of the contents (water in a water bottle, orange liquid in a Fanta bottle) empty and recycle. If not, leave liquid inside and throw in the rubbish. Don’t empty out oil, chemicals or cleaning agents.

Download the Safety Advice sheet below

What to do with the rubbish & recycling?

Recycling – Metal and Plastic

  • Recycling will only be picked up from designated recycling bins.
  • It is easier if items for recycling are collected in different colour bags than the rubbish. Plastic Free Seas uses grey bags for recycling and black bags for rubbish so they don’t get mixed up.
  • Only good condition, clean plastic can be recycled from the beach. This is usually beverage bottles.
  • Plastic bottles and metal cans can be deposited loose straight into nearby recycling bins for collection. If left on the beach they will not be collected for recycling. You can keep the lids and labels on.
  • Metal should be kept separate from plastic. 

Rubbish

  • Clean Shorelines or the FEHD will be able to tell you where to leave your rubbish bags, either at the closest rubbish bins or on the beach well above the high tideline. Do not leave the bags on the beach without informing either Clean Shorelines or the government 1823 hotline. It may not be appropriate to leave the rubbish bags on all beaches so please enquire first.

When you have done your beach cleanup don’t forget to share your photos and efforts
with Plastic Free Seas on Facebook and Instagram!