California College Students Go Spring Cleaning on Spring Break

College kids will tour the California coast, cleaning up waste and promoting environmental issues.

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Some 50 college students in California are going to the beach for spring break. But they won't be relaxing during the day and partying hard with other college students at night. These students are on a mission.

Some 50 college students from multiple California colleges will tour the state's massive coast, clean up waste on the beaches, and promote environmental causes, the Daily Bruin reports. The students will be participating in the California Public Interest Research Group's Wave of Change Spring Break Tour, which will end with a lobbying effort in Sacramento in favor of Assembly Bill 1998, which bans the use of plastic bags in California. For the first four days, the students will be picking up Styrofoam and plastic bag waste on beaches in places like San Diego and Santa Cruz.

"You can't think of California without thinking of the beach. The ocean is so important to California's fishing industry, its beauty, and its ecology," Coreen Weintraub, a UCLA student and the chair of CALPIRG's UCLA chapter, tells the Daily Bruin.

The report says Californians use 19 million plastic bags each year, while only 1 percent of Styrofoam used is recycled. If Bill 1998 passes, California will be the first state to ban the use of both, the Daily Bruin says.

"Taking a stance on Styrofoam is really crucial," one traveler tells the Daily Bruin. "[The trip] is more to get attention to the idea that [we] as college students care for the environment. Banning plastic bags is not a big sacrifice, but it's very helpful."

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