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Each of Us Can Help Keep Our Beaches Clean

August 24, 2003

Re "Report of Unhealthy Beaches Brings a Plea for Controls," Aug. 13:

It's disheartening to see the beaches I grew up on become progressively dirtier, more polluted and less safe.

I have noticed the disappearance of sand crabs and clear water every time I visit home and go for a swim.

One of the biggest hurdles for us to overcome is a feeling of "Oh, well, it's too late. It's so bad there is nothing I can do." There is room for hope.

I now live in Alaska and through my work in a citizen-based, watershed protection group, I help make sure that the salmon swimming through town continue to make that journey forever.

The main reason our waterways in urban Anchorage still attract fisherman is not because we are immune to pollution; rather it is the 250,000 residents there who care about these streams and actively involve themselves in their protection.

In Orange County, the O.C. Coastkeeper is working hard to protect waterways through citizen involvement.

I urge anyone to contact this group to find out what they can do to create a legacy of clean water and safe beaches.

Emily Creely

Anchorage

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