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Sign up to help clean up tsunami debris

FLORENCE, Ore. - Want to help keep Oregon's beaches clear of tsunami debris?

Join the Oregon Marine Debris Team.

Four non-profit organizations with histories of stewardship on the Oregon coast have teamed up to manage the public response to tsunami debris.

The four groups - CoastWatch, Surfrider Foundation, SOLVE and Washed Ashore, along with academic partner Oregon Sea Grant - have formed the Oregon Marine Debris Team to collaborate on citizen-based efforts to track and clean up debris generated by the tsunami that struck Japan in March 2011.

An estimated 1.5 million tons of debris pulled out to sea by the tsunami is circulating the Pacific.

An unknown portion is likely to wash up in Oregon.

The goal of the Oregon Marine Debris Team is to organize hundreds of volunteers to monitor the coast; identify and report areas where tsunami debris is accumulating; and participate in cleanup efforts.

Oregonians interested in being part of a citizen-based effort to take care of the Oregon shore are encouraged to sign up and get on the list for notification.

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