#EUBeachCleanup 2021

Together to protect marine life

A single plastic bag may not seem like much, but when it is part of the millions of tons of litter ending up in the ocean every year, it has a concrete impact on marine life. For many living beings in our oceans, the distinction between litter and food is not clear, and they may end up being poisoned. Others may get trapped in improperly disposed waste.

The pollution of our oceans starts on land and each one of us can take simple actions to prevent it!

Every year, the EU organises an ocean-activism and awareness-raising campaign - #EUBeachCleanup - featuring events across the world. Teaming up with the United Nations and the bluest of friends, the Smurfs, the EU strongly believes that we can all make a real difference for our blue planet, taking responsible action as individuals and collectively. This year we raise the stakes with even more engaging online and offline activities.

For the 2021 edition, we are calling for more localised engagement, as group actions may pose risks to public health. In line with the upcoming UN Biodiversity Conference in October, this year’s global #EUBeachCleanup campaign will focus on the theme of marine biodiversity. Under the headline “together to protect marine life” we invite you to explore the UN’s ActNow campaign for individual action and take daily steps to protect our environment. Each of us can combat pollution and marine litter by changing a few habits in our everyday life!

Follow the hashtag #EUBeachCleanup or our social media accounts and stay tuned!

Where possible, local #EUBeachCleanup events will be organised throughout the Summer and in September, applying all necessary safety precautions, and culminating around World Coastal Cleanup Day on 18 September. Check our calendar to see what is happening near you. Or why not organise your own event? Keep us posted and have your event added to the official campaign calendar.



Are you looking for fun local #EUBeachCleanup activities? Stay tuned for our calendar of events organized across the world this Summer and beyond! All events are organised in accordance to national guidelines, applying all safety precautions.



Can’t find an event near you? You can always organise your own event!
Share with us the details of your event and have it added to the official campaign calendar.

ActNow – Join the #EUBeachCleanup challenge!

Ready to take action? As part of the 2021 edition of the #EUBeachCleanup campaign, we invite you to join ActNowthe UN campaign for individual action on climate change and sustainability. By changing our habits and making choices that have less harmful effects on the environment, we have the power to protect our planet, including the ocean!

Together with the United Nations, the EU has listed a number of actions you can take to protect marine life! Start by downloading the mobile app by AWorld – it allows you to:

  • Choose sustainable habits related to this year’s beach clean-up activity;
  • See the impact you are making;
  • Take educational journeys on protecting marine life; and
  • Engage in group challenges




Download from the app store


Sea Life Stories

Watch this section as we collect stories on sea life protection across the world.

#EUBeachCleanup, underwater cleanup, marine life protection

A Deep Dive: What Lies Beneath Our Seas?


Protecting natural resources and wildlife of Nicaragua has become a mission for Mark.

He is part of the indigenous Miskita community, who was active in the hunting and selling of turtles. The sustainability of the species is at stake with the economic practices of the community, therefore a balance needed to be found.

Since 2014, the intervention of EU projects has aimed to reduce the dependence of the community on scarce resources, protecting both the population and the surrounding environment.


At the beach, in the countryside or in cities around the world, our #EUBeachCleanup volunteers are busy collecting litter to prevent it from getting into the ocean. Their contribution is fundamental to protecting sea life. Stay tuned for some of their stories here.


“Today, we clean the beach in the hope that my daughter can enjoy the same #CleanSeas I remember from my childhood.” - EU Ambassador to Singapore Iwona Piórko

Los voluntarios del #EUBeachCleanup 2021 en playa Las Hojas, El Salvador, recolectaron más de cien bolsas de basura y residuos entre botellas, llantas de autos, desechables y otros artículos plásticos. Playa Las Hojas fue uno de los 65 diferentes puntos de limpieza donde se espera haber recolectado cerca de 80 toneladas de residuos.

#EUBeachCleanup, beach cleaning, climate action, #EUGreenDeal, ocean protection, protecting marine biodiversity

From the EU to the world… the #EUBeachCleanup reaches its peak as we mark World Coastal Clean-up Day. Across the globe, people are cleaning beaches, lakes, rivers and other areas in their neighbourhood, to prevent litter from getting into the ocean, and protect our fascinating marine life from being destroyed.

The European Union in partnership with the Civil Society Forum on Climate Change (FORUMCC) organised a Beach clean-up on 26th June 2021 at Kawe Beach, Kinondoni Municipality in the city of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

beach clean-up action in Angola

Ce qui était à l’origine un geste symbolique rassemblant une poignée de bénévoles dans quelques pays est devenu aujourd’hui un mouvement mondial, auquel participent des centaines de personnes et qui permet de ramasser des tonnes de déchets sur les plages, dans les rivières et les lacs du monde entier; plus de 80 pays ont ainsi participé à l’édition de 2019. Le 18 août, nous lançons officiellement l’édition 2021 de la campagne #EUBeachCleanup, en coopération avec l’ONU et avec le soutien des petits amis bleus, les Schtroumfs. La campagne de cette année, qui est axée sur la protection de la vie marine, prévoit des actions physiques et numériques pour que chacun puisse participer. Elle aura pour point d’orgue la journée mondiale du nettoyage des côtes, le 18 septembre.



#EUBeachCleanUp 2021 : Retour en images sur la journée de  nettoyage de la plage de Hann Bel Air

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