- Associated Press - Sunday, September 20, 2015

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Hundreds of volunteers are taking to Maine’s beaches to participate in the 30th annual International Coastal Cleanup.

The effort is part of Maine’s Coastweek, which began on Saturday and runs until Sept. 26. State officials say volunteers will document every piece of trash they collect to contribute to an annual index of global marine debris.

Maine volunteers picked up 10,484 pounds of trash last year. The event is taking place all along the Maine coastline.

Officials with the state Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry say the effort is important to clean beaches and inform scientific research and public policy.

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