Sun, Sand & Sustainability

8 Tips for Going Green at the Beach

If the beach is where your heart is, show your love by adopting some of these environmentally friendly tips when you travel to the beach this summer:

Secure Your Beach Gear

Keep an eye on the winds and the tide! Move those sand shovels to higher ground and secure floats so they do not blow away. Our local dolphins and gulls will thank you.

Opt for Reusable Cups

Ditch the red solo cups for the new aluminum variety – they are reusable, 100% recyclable, and can be found at major stores and online.

Avoid Harmful Celebrations

Skip the celebratory balloon release in favor of something that doesn’t degrade into microplastics and harm marine life – even biodegradable lanterns take years to break down. Instead, wave reusable pinwheels, kites, or ribbon wands at your event.

Manage Your Trash

Haul out garbage from your beach day and firmly secure household trash cans with lids so that your garbage does not end up in the marsh, bay, or ocean.

Reduce Carbon Footprint

Take your bike to the beach or carpool with others – you will lower your carbon footprint and save enough money in parking fees to buy an order of Boardwalk Fries!

Respect Wildlife

Be kind to shorebirds, crabs, and critters, and keep at least 150 feet away from stranded marine mammals. Report strandings to the Marine Education, Research & Rehabilitation Institute at 302-228-5029

Use Reusable Picnic Supplies

Bring reusable cutlery and
straws to your beach picnic
instead of single use plastics.

Engage Kids in Clean-Up

Involve your kids in a mini-beach clean-up at the end of a beach day – pick up bottle caps, lids, and other beach debris and make it a game.

Danielle Swallow, Coastal Hazards Specialist, is a certified climate change professional with Delaware Sea Grant (  Delaware Sea Grant utilizes research, education, and extension work in support of resilient communities, economies, and coastal resources.  Danielle provides technical assistance and outreach to communities on emergency preparedness and building resilience to weather and climate hazards.  She is co-founder of the Resilient and Sustainable Communities League (RASCL – and loves hiking the Gordons Pond Trail in Cape Henlopen State Park. 

* indicates required

More Stories