From Beach to Bin: Dealing with Fishing Line Left at Black's Beach San Diego

From Beach to Bin: Dealing with Fishing Line Left at Black's Beach San Diego

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Michael Tesis started this petition to San Diego City Council and

Black’s Beach is a two-mile stretch of coastline located in La Jolla, San Diego. Enjoyed by residents, students, and tourists alike, it is also home to a diverse ecosystem of animals and plants. An abundant reef system near the shoreline makes it a popular spot for fishing.

While surrounding beaches near La Jolla limit fishing activities, Black’s Beach offers unrestricted access. The city of San Diego does not account for this and provides no methods of disposal or recycling appropriate for fishing waste. This leads to hazardous materials, such as fishing line often being left behind.

Fishing line poses the greatest threat to the entirety of the beach's environment for four reasons:

  • It is ugly (Aesthetic Impact)

The breathtaking views of Black's Beach are polluted by dirty fishing line washed ashore. 

  • It kills wildlife (Animal Impact)

Birds, fish, and seals are at great risk of entanglement leading to amputated limbs, strangulation, and ultimately death. 

  • It gets in waterways (Economic Impact)

Fishing line in the ocean can travel up and down the coast of California where it becomes entangled in boat propellers, risking boaters’ safety and requiring expensive repairs.

  • It becomes part of the food chain (Health Impact)

Fishing line that is consumed by San Diego sea life will retain chemical properties that remain in the food chain as microplastics and pose future health risks for all consumers-including us. 

To address this the UCSD Associated Students Triton Lobby Corps is proposing to the city council a plan to install microfilament fishing line recycling bins at the entrances to Black's Beach. 

  •  It is a low cost easily installable solution

The waste disposal sites we propose are composed of five main pieces – a 6 inch PVC pipe, a PVC elbow, a PVC female threaded adapter, a PVC threaded plug, and adhesive. These materials are can be found in any average department store and cost around $40-50. The proper signage to indicate that it is for fishing line only will cost $20. The total cost will come around to $60-$70. This is a low cost project with benefits that can not otherwise be obtained. The materials disposed of in the bins can be picked up by outside organizations such as Berkley Fishing Co. to properly recycle the lines and turn them into other fishing gear.

  • It is a proven success throughout California 

Previous projects that have employed this method of fishing line recycling have seen positive results, so much so that monofilament fishing line recycling stations are promoted by the California Department of Boating and Waterways. There are even monofilament fishline recycling bins already in use in San Diego!

Fishing line is made of monofilament plastics meaning that it stays in the environment for up to 600 years as it does not biodegrade. In order to keep it off the animals, out of our stomachs, and away from the coastline it requires the city's immediate action in guaranteeing this safe disposal option. 

(If you would like access to the detailed policy proposal email mtesis@ucsd.edu) 

0 have signed. Let’s get to 5,000!
At 5,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!