Don’t Trash California’s Sea Turtles!

Did you know that plastic pollution in the oceans harms or kills about 100,000 sea turtles and other marine species per year? Be a California Sea Turtle Hero today by reducing your use of plastics!

Public Domain. Rabon David, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Photo by Rabon David, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Sea Turtles & Trash

Learn about sea turtles and trash! The Pacific leatherback sea turtle is California’s official Marine Reptile, yet sadly their population has declined by 90 percent in recent decades. These ocean giants are on the brink of extinction due to capture in fishing nets and hooks, poaching of eggs, climate change and pollution.

Each year they make a long 12,000 mile journey from Indonesia to our California Coast to eat jellyfish. Unfortunately, plastic bags floating in the ocean look a lot like jellyfish, and are often mistaken as such by turtles.

Plastics from a Galveston, Texas beach clean up. Sea Turtles and Trash.

Plastics from a Galveston, Texas beach clean up.

Plastic bags in our oceans is a real problem. In California alone, grocery stores distribute 19 billion plastic bags. Plastic bags that are thrown away often get blown into waterways by the wind. These bags are deadly for sea turtles, which eat or become entangled in them. The bags also contain harmful pollutants, and can take 1,000 years to “degrade.”

It’s critical that we stop plastic bags from reaching our oceans in order to save our California sea turtles!

Be a California Sea Turtle Hero!

  • Bring reusable bags with you wherever you go! Speak with the manager of your local grocery store and ask them to phase out plastic bags.
  • Whenever you have the opportunity, purchase glass bottles instead of plastic containers! Every choice you make will help keep our oceans clean.
  • Get involved in a local beach clean-up! Look for local clean ups near you or start one yourself. Check out the links below to get involved in a beach clean up
  • Educate yourself and your community about the impacts of plastics on sea turtles and the ocean!
  • If you live in California, please vote ‘Yes’ on Prop 67 to support protect California’s protect bag ban. You can learn more at:

By reducing our plastic usage, we can aid in the revitalization of California’s sea turtles. Let’s keep plastic out of the ocean and help save the sea turtles that live in our oceanic backyard.