Virginia Waterways Cleanup Events for Fall 2020

We are proud to be part of the Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup.

Many Mini-Cleanups!
The International Coastal Cleanup in Virginia WILL be held in 2020, although the cleanups will look different this year as we will be following social distancing requirements. Instead of large cleanup events of 30 or 80 or 200 volunteers, we will be encouraging Many Mini-Cleanups with a smaller number of volunteers. The litter hasn’t stopped, and neither should we! So let’s do this! Take this opportunity to get out into nature…and help make it cleaner too.

Read about how to lead a cleanup HERE.

The Ocean Starts at Your Front Door
This will be a great year for everyone to clean their neighborhood, a stream near their home, or do a cleanup while visiting a park or beach. Every square inch of Virginia is in a watershed, so we all help our ocean and the Chesapeake Bay by removing litter and trash – where ever it is found.

Data Collection: An Important Part of the ICC
Please collect data about the trash you are finding -- your data will be used to help us understand trends and come up with solutions to marine debris and plastic pollution! You can collect data using paper Data Cards (download them here) OR you can use the CleanSwell App on your smartphone. NEW: Personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves and face masks have been added to the CleanSwell App and the paper Data Card.

Certificates and Bandannas:
Clean Virginia Waterways will send your group/family a certificate thanking you for your participation in the ICC in Virginia. In addition, a bandanna will be mailed to the leader of each group. Sign up here to get your certificate and bandanna.

Safety First
CVW has expanded our safety guidelines to include COVID-19 precautions for a safe cleanup. Read the Safety Guidelines here.

Register Your Cleanup with Clean VA Waterways
Please register your Cleanups using our Google Form here. If you can’t use Google, just send us an email with your name and address and let us know if you will be gathering data via the CleanSwell App or by using a printed copy of the Data Card.

CVW is working with partners throughout Virginia to establish "Supply Pickup Locations". So far, we have locations lined up in VA Beach, Abingdon, Richmond, Farmville and Northern VA. If your organization will have a staffed location and can serve as a Supply Pickup Location, please contact us at cleanva@longwood.edu! We regret that we don't have enough resourses to ship supplies to every cleanup location. Many libraries, including the Hampton, VA Public Libraries have cleanup kits available year round for checking out! Be sure to all ahead to learn of the library hours.

If you have questions, please send an email to cleanva@longwood.edu, or leave a message by calling 434-395-2602, and we will call you back.

As ever, thank you for supporting the International Coastal Cleanup in Virginia! Since Clean Virginia Waterways was founded in 1995, this annual volunteer event has kept nearly 5 MILLION pounds of litter and plastic pollution out of our ocean because of your dedication.


Remember, YEAR-ROUND you can record data from your cleanups
using "Clean Swell" on your smart phone...from the Ocean Conservancy


About the Virginia Waterways Cleanup
  • This statewide event is part of the Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup!
  • 2020: Clean Virginia Waterways celebrates our 26th year of organizing the ICC in Virginia.
  • This annual statewide event not only cleans our waterways, it also collects valuable data about trash & litter in our waterways
  • Cleanups are held between September 1 and October 31 every year
  • More than 116,000 Virginians have volunteered in Virginia since 1995
  • It is hands-on stewardship of our water resources
  • You CAN make a difference! Volunteer, lead a cleanup, or help support this important statewide effort by contributing to CVW.


THANK YOU to our partners and sponsors!

Our partners include corporations, foundations, and individual donors that make it possible for thousands of Virginians to participate in caring for our rivers and beaches. Thank you!

Please purchase a "Friends of the Chesapeake license plate! You will be supporting MANY worthy projects that are working for a cleaner and healthier Chesapeake Bay and Virginia's rivers too!
Learn more: Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund

Glad Trash Bags
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (State Parks and Adopt-A-Stream program)
Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program, Department of Environmental Quality

You too can support this annual statewide cleanup event! Please consider a donation to support our work! Learn more.



Our volunteers remove litter and debris by walking along shorelines..and by boat. Please join us for a rewarding day that will make you feel good about taking care of our planet!