Sunday was Earth Day, but naturally, actor and environmental warrior Ian Somerhalder started celebrating a day early. On Saturday, he worked with his foundation and thousands of school children, parents, and environmentalists to help clean up the state of California, as part of his “Let’s Get Dirty” initiative.
In an interview Saturday evening at the ISF Influence Affair, Somerhalder said that their biggest cleanup targets for the day were actually the smallest pieces of litter.
“Cigarette butts are a real big one. Cigarette butts and plastic bottles and caps. And it’s the really small particles…you know, they’re finding plastic in the DNA of plankton, which is the base of all life. And that can’t happen.”
Teams worked from the northern end to the southern tip of California, and although they may not have cleaned up every square inch of the state, he feels good about the impact that they made.
“Maybe we didn’t clean everything in the state of California today, but going forward, everyone who was a participant, and everyone who didn’t get a chance to participate, is now gonna go forward knowing that you don’t throw stuff out of your window, you don’t throw stuff out of your car, you don’t drop stuff on the ground…There is no way. It ends up in our oceans, it ends up in our gutters, it ends up in our lands and forests, and effectively in our DNA.”
So, after spending a day picking up trash on the beach with a bunch of eager students, just how does Somerhalder think the “Let’s Get Dirty” event went? He sums it up pretty simply.
“It was awesome,” he says.
To hear his thoughts on the day, check out the video below, and for more photos and info, visit the ISF Facebook page.