No Japanese cars, no fishing boats, no homes were found in the Corte Madera Creek Watershed during Saturday's Coastal Cleanup Day.
More than 5 tons of debris was washed out to sea during the tsunami that hit the north coast of Japan in 2011. Some of the debris, including oil drums, buoys, even a Harley-Davidson motorcycle still in a crate, have reportedly hit North America's Pacific Coast already, but that's just the first wave. The bulk of the waste is expected to reach the Pacific shores in October, according to experts.
Marin County organizers of Saturday's cleanup effort stressed that volunteers shouldn't expect to find large chunks of debris washed up in Marin, at least not yet.
"Scientists want us to report anything that might have washed up from Japan. The tsunami washed up a lot of traceable material," said Laurie Williams of the Friends of Corte Madera Creek Watershed.
The Friends of Corte Madera Creek Watershed got some help from athletes at Dominican University, San Domenico students, local Boy Scouts and others cleaning up a two-mile stretch between Larkspur Landing and the Bon Air Bridge.
Did you volunteer? Share your photos and experiences from Coastal Cleanup Day here or on Facebook.
Volunteers found large pieces of industrial styrofoam, jugs, wooden planks, plastic bottles and shopping carts. It was an ugly mess of garbage piled up in the Golden Gate Ferry Terminal parking lot in plastic bags. Some of the garbage could be repurposed to create a piece of artwork, according to Williams.
"A lot of wind-blown stuff washes up from the tide," Williams said. "There's plenty of plastic and other garbage."
In 2010, more than 82,500 volunteers removed more than 1.2 million pounds of trash and recyclables from California beaches, lakes, and waterways, according to the Bay Model website.
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