Boats battle barrage of plastic waste on the Clyde

Glasgow Coastal Rowing Club helps to rid the River Clyde of rubbish

We had a great day with a 15 strong team of rowers from Glasgow Coastal Rowing Club have participated in a major clean up of the River Clyde, removing 13 bags (38 kg) amount of litter and raising awareness about how 80% of litter in our streams, rivers and seas comes from land.

The volunteers from the Rowing Club were supported jointly by environmental charity, Keep Scotland Beautiful and Marine Conservation Society in cleaning up a stretch of the River Clyde in front of the Riverside Museum on land and by boat - resulting in the team collecting a range of litter including bottles, bags and nearly 2,000 plastic cotton buds

The group’s activities helped to support  our national Clean Up Scotland campaign, which is raising awareness of the sheer scale of Scotland’s litter problem and encouraging more people across the country to dispose of their rubbish responsibly before it goes on to pollute Scotland’s rivers, seas and oceans.

It also chimes with the work of the Marine Conservation Society, ahead of their upcoming Great British Beach Clean from the 14-17th September. We have organised events as part of this event for our campaign, My Beach, Your Beach, we'd love you to come along. Check out our web pages for more information. 

Glasgow Coastal Rowing Club is committed to improving the Clyde environment and regularly encounters litter when training on the river.

Michael Stratigos from Glasgow Coastal Rowing Club said:

“Sadly, we regularly encounter plastic and other waste which finds its way into the Clyde and ultimately out to sea. We hope that our litter pick helps to make a difference in the amount of waste ending up in the Clyde. But perhaps more importantly, we hope to positively impact the perception of the Clyde, showing it is a place for recreation, enjoyment, and natural and cultural heritage.”

The Keep Scotland Beautiful Clean Up Scotland campaign calls for armies of volunteers from across the country to work together to help transform the areas where they live and reduce the amount of litter that ends up in Scotland’s watercourses.

Pete Leonard, Operations Director at Keep Scotland Beautiful, commented:

“Keep Scotland Beautiful welcomed the opportunity to support the Glasgow Coastal Rowing Club clean up on the River Clyde. Blue Planet helped to open people’s eyes to how destructive litter is once it reaches our rivers, seas and oceans.

“With litter at its worst level in ten years, we are proud of the work undertaken today, and all across the country, in helping us to clean up Scotland. However, we cannot stand back and continue to let people ruin our country with their irresponsibility. There needs to be significant behaviour change, people must stop dropping litter, in order to reverse Scotland’s environmental decline.”

The Marine Conservation Society helped organise the event, Catherine Gemmell, Scotland Conservation Officer, who was shocked with the amount of litter found, added:

“The rowing club have done a fantastic job and we were all surprised by the amount of plastic cotton buds found! This is almost 2,000 less that could re-enter the Clyde and potentially end up in our oceans.  Everyone needs to remember to only flush the three Ps - pee, poo and paper.”

Everyone who took part in the clean up was welcomed into the Riverside Museum for a hot drink and snack.

Ian Boardley, Operations Manager at Encore, who run the cafe at the Riverside Museum, commented: “It’s vital that Glasgow businesses and organisations work together to keep our city clean and litter-free, and events such as Clean up the Clyde are a fantastic way of doing this.

“At Encore, we are committed to eliminating our use of single-use plastics wherever possible, spearheaded by our reusable cups which we offer at all our locations across Glasgow, and it is our hope that this will contribute to a greener, more sustainable city.”


To learn more about Clean Up Scotland and how you can register your own event, visit www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org/cleanupscotland.


05 September 2018

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