Tuesday, July 10, 2012


For Immediate Release: July 10, 2012
Contact: Joanna Simon, Clean Ocean Action, 732-872-0111 (office) 908- 489-5611 (cell)

Summer-long Campaign to Engage the Power of the People

Mayor of Belmar, Matt Doherty signing on the Clean Ocean Zone

Belmar, NJ— Today, New Jersey residents and environmental advocates gathered at Taylor Pavilion in Belmar to announce the start of Clean Ocean Action’s summer 2012 campaign to raise awareness of current ocean pollution issues. The C.O.A.S.T. (Clean Ocean Action Shore Tips) campaign promotes citizen-to-citizen communication, building a grassroots movement of concerned and informed citizens. 

Today also marks the one month countdown to the Tour for the Shore - an unprecedented public awareness campaign to support the nation's first Clean Ocean Zone (COZ), an initiative which will permanently protect and celebrate the waters off our coast. Through the 2012 C.O.A.S.T. program, Clean Ocean Action and COA volunteers will be working to rally 30 elected officials to sign-on in support of the COZ in the next 30 days leading up to the Tour. 

“If there’s one thing that the C.O.A.S.T. campaign must do this summer, it’s to get beachgoers out of their beach chairs and show their support for the Clean Ocean Zone,” said Joanna Simon, 2012 C.O.A.S.T. Intern. “We, the citizens, have to mobilize others to get in motion for the ocean, to influence our elected officials and protect our beaches for ourselves and future generations.”

Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty was in attendance and the first of the 30 officials to sign-on in support of the Clean Ocean Zone, stating “I am proud to be the first elected official to sign the Clean Ocean Zone resolution during this C.O.A.S.T. campaign,” he also added that “all New Jersey residents should be thankful for the hard work and success that COA has had with the waters off the New Jersey coast.”

“Citizens have worked hard for over 25 years to turn our ocean from a national joke to a premier tourism destination and it is now time for us to lock in that success and become the nation’s first Clean Ocean Zone.  Our elected officials must now step up and endorse the Clean Ocean Zone initiative” said Cindy Zipf, Executive Director of Clean Ocean Action.

 “The Clean Ocean Zone has been 10 years in the making. The time is now to act on this important initiative,” said Richard Lee, Executive Director of Surfers Environmental Alliance. “Tell your friends, tell your family. Please support the Clean Ocean Zone,” he added.

Also in attendance was paddling enthusiast, Margo Pellegrino. No stranger to raising awareness for the ocean, Pellegrino paddled from Miami to Maine in 2007 over the course of just-under 11 weeks, bringing attention to Atlantic Ocean issues from pollution to over-development. In 2008, she paddled from Long Beach Island (New Jersey) to Washington, D.C., delivering “messages in a bottle” to legislators. In 2009, Pellegrino paddled the Gulf Coast, then a year later, paddled from Seattle to San Diego - all in the name of the ocean. Margo is gearing up for the 2012 Tour for the Shore as she plans to lead the way for Clean Ocean Action, paddling the entire distance from Cape May to Montauk.

Margo will travel by outrigger canoe along the shoreline while Clean Ocean Action’s Coastal Policy Attorney Sean Dixon hits the pavement on a road bicycle. Rallies, action-tables, and beach teams will be held along the way in every coastal district and elected leaders will be urged to participate and support the initiative. The tour is scheduled to take place during the peak of the shore’s tourist season providing the coalition the opportunity to reach tens of thousands of people with one message: “The time is now for the Clean Ocean Zone.” 

“We hope cyclists, surfers, families, kayakers, and beachgoers will grab a bike or a board and join us as we make our way up the coast,” said Sean Dixon, COA Coastal Policy Attorney excited to be making his first cycling adventure for-a-cause. “We will have maps and timetables online – as well as difficulty estimates – to help anyone who wants to participate decide the best way to take action for the ocean,” Dixon added.

To find out more about this summer’s tour and to find out how to participate, please visit www.cleanoceanzone.org or call Clean Ocean Action at 732-872-0111.


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