Game on! Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf and San Francisco Mayor London Breed met on Treasure Island today to challenge each other and their respective cities to a Battle for the Bay, a friendly volunteer competition to protect the shared Bay by cleaning up coastal areas and neighborhoods in both cities.
The cleanup event will take place at worksites throughout San Francisco and Oakland on September 21 as part of the annual California Coastal Cleanup Day. The challenge is on to protect the treasured Bay by cleaning and greening both cities!
Projects include trash removal, habitat restoration, tree planting, and beautification. The mayors made a joint call to turn the tide on trash and be a part of the global movement to keep our cities and shared waterways clean.
Oakland and San Francisco will compete to make the most impactful cleanups measured by volunteer turnout, amount of debris removed, geographic area cleaned, beautification projects and most unusual object found by a volunteer.
“Battle for the Bay will help protect our cherished Bay and is part of our broader efforts to keep every neighborhood in our City clean, green and beautiful,” Mayor Breed said. “San Francisco is known for being an environmental champion, and we’ll continue working together to keep San Francisco’s diverse communities looking good—not just on this one day, but every day. It’s a matter of need and civic pride.”
“From the streets to the shores, this annual cleanup is an opportunity to shine that thousands of Oaklanders make a huge success every year,” Mayor Schaaf said. “This year we’re building on that success by bringing new support into our neighborhoods where the community faces illegal dumping every day. This is a win-win, because sidewalk trash is just a few steps away from contaminating our natural waterways. By cleaning our neighborhoods we’re also protecting our Bay!”
Mayor Schaaf and Mayor Breed also announced Thursday their convivial wager over which city will win the Battle for the Bay contest. The Mayor whose city has fewer volunteers will travel to the winning Mayor’s city to volunteer at a non-profit of the winning Mayor’s choosing.
The challenge is dubbed The Battle for the Bay in honor of the 30th anniversary of the 1989 “Battle of the Bay” Major League Baseball World Series between the San Francisco Giants and the Oakland A’s. Residents and businesses are invited to show love for Oakland, San Francisco, and the environment, by volunteering to help on Battle for the Bay.
“Every day, somewhere in Oakland, our community is doing something to make our home more beautiful and clean. We’re here to support that work every day, and scale it way up with events like Battle for the Bay,” Oakland Public Works Director Jason Mitchell said. “In Oakland, we’re encouraging every resident to be Oaktown PROUD -- Prevent and Report Oakland’s Unlawful Dumping. With true partnership between our City and our community, our cities’ year-round strategies to clean and beautify neighborhoods and waterways will turn the tide on trash.”
“Public Works is a proud partner of Coastal Cleanup Day,” San Francisco Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru said. “We are ready to sign up volunteers, clean up our neighborhoods and protect our bay. I want to thank our City partners, including the Recreation and Park Department and Port of San Francisco, as well as our steadfast, year-round community partners. I also would like to welcome new volunteers to Battle for the Bay on Coastal Cleanup Day. It requires a true team effort to keep our neighborhoods and our environment looking good.”
The event has drawn major support from sponsors on both sides of the Bay. Sponsors who have committed funding and resources to Battle for the Bay include Recology, Alaska Airlines, Waste Management of Alameda County, Argent Materials, California Waste Solutions, Andes Construction, Clear Channel, Webcor, the Emerald Fund, the Warriors, and Black and Veatch.
Key partners in the event include the California Coastal Commission, The Oakland Parks and Recreation Foundation, San Francisco Public Works, San Francisco Recreation and Park Department, Port of San Francisco, Caltrans, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, the National Park Service, the Presidio Trust and California State Parks.
A press conference Thursday included community speakers from San Francisco’s St. Andrew and St. Phillips Missionary Baptist churches and the East Oakland Congress of Neighborhoods, and was supported by mascots Lou Seal from the Giants and Stomper from the A’s.
People of all ages and abilities are invited to join the event, which is part of the largest volunteer day in California and the world! On this day, thousands of volunteers remove litter from waterways and shorelines, as well as upstream areas across California, the nation, and in about 100 participating countries. At the Battle for the Bay, volunteers will pick up litter, clean up our neighborhoods and beaches and participate in other beautification projects in Oakland and San Francisco.
Which City can turn out the most volunteers? Collect the most trash? Join your city’s team to show your civic pride make a difference! Choose from dozens of volunteer sites in Oakland and San Francisco. Be a part of it!
To sign up as a site coordinator, find volunteer locations, register as a group, or for more information go to www.battleforthebay2019.org.