In Hawai'i last year, 2,206 residents walked the state's beaches as part of the 2005 International Coastal Cleanup picking up rubbish.
They walked 87 miles of coastline, and picked up 118,883 pieces of stuff weighing a total of 36,288 pounds.
Worldwide, as part of the same program, 450,000 volunteers in 74 countries collected 8.2 million pounds of debris from 18,000 miles of coastline.
The Ocean Conservancy, sponsor of the global cleanup, noted that the some of most common things found did not represent debris from the ocean, but from the land.
Worldwide, 59 percent of the debris picked up was land-based. In Hawai'i, the figure was nearer 50 percent.
"Marine debris kills wildlife and is a threat to the local environment, not to mention an eyesore," said Vickie Matter, director of the International Coastal Cleanup, in a press release.
"The information we've gathered over the past 20 years shows that it's ultimately a man-made problem, which means it is highly solvable," she said.
In terms of numbers, the most frequently found items were cigarette remnants — mainly filters.
There were nearly 40,000 picked up in Hawai'i — one-third of all the things collected.
Worldwide, smoking materials represented 29 percent of all the items collected.
In the Islands, caps and lids represented 12 percent, food wrappers 9 percent, glass bottles 7 percent. Picnic items like cups, plates and forks and spoons made up 4.5 percent.
Those were the top five classifications, and they make up two-thirds of all the stuff picked up, by number. The next five items are bags, plastic drink bottles, drink cans, fishing line and straws and stirrers.
About 150 divers conducted cleanups along about 3 miles of underwater areas around Hawai'i.
For them, the glass drink bottles represented the top item picked up, followed by drink cans, fishing line, fishing lures, light sticks and items of clothing.
Their top take was rounded out by rope, food wrappers, plastic sheeting, cigarettes and caps and lids.
The volunteers found lots of odd stuff, including 853 fish traps or parts thereof. They found 288 appliances like washers and refrigerators, which appeared to have been dumped on the coastline.
In the dumping category, there were also batteries — 660 of them. And 225 tires, and 380 other car parts and entire cars.
If you have a question or concern about the Hawaiian environment, drop a note to Jan TenBruggencate at P.O. Box 524, Lihu'e, HI 96766 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Or call him at (808) 245-3074.