First Flush 2013

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On the 9th day of October, Santa Monica encountered the first flush of the year. This was surprising because the amount of rain indicated a gurgle rather than a flush. When we realized that it was the First Flush we sent a crew down to the beach to do an emergency clean up. When we arrived at the Pico-Kenter storm drain, we were disturbed by the debris of human pollutants.  Coffee cups, plastic bottles, and tennis balls were only some of the objects in a stream of potentially toxic foam and slime that led straight for the ocean. We also noticed that the morning after there was a new trash collecting vehicle that was roaming the surface of the sand. This was really cool despite the fact that it was necessary. We are expecting to have a second flush that will carry the rest of the debris (considering the amount of rain was too little) to completely flush the storm drains of sand. Team Marine is currently on standby until the second flush occurs.

We would also like to acknowledge Matthew King and Meredith McCarthy from Heal the Bay for notifying us of this year’s flush.

Heal the Bay Blog on the First Flush:


Also, check out this First Flush video below:

Team Marine on CNN Latino!


After unveiling our gas-to-electric car conversion project at Alt-Car Expo we were invited to go on CNN Latino on a news show called “Sin Limites con Elizabeth Espinosa”‘.  We were able to get the word out about our car at a Television network that gets millions of views daily and that positive media outreach surely helped us expand our audience level to a more well-rounded one.On that 2nd day of October, team marine members: Patricio Guerrero, Kimberly Fuentes, and Jazmin Carvajal went and spoke about our car in the hopes of reaching out to the Latin community. Our goal at this event was to explain the benefits of driving electric (monetary, health wise, and environmental) and showing the audience that this is something that the youth is extremely passionate about. It was very exciting to see our members on television thanks to Alberto Henriquez (Producer/ Booker), Claudia Bautista (Spanish teacher at Santa Monica High School), and Elizabeth Espinosa . We are all so grateful to have been granted this amazing opportunity and it will hopefully be one of many more to come! Check out the interview below!

 Direct Link:

Bag It Challenge Video


From the hallways at school to the halls of government, Team Marine is committed to research science and environmental advocacy. This short film documents some of our work and achievements this year, and we were inspired by the film Bag It to press forward and enter our work in the 2013 Bag It Competition. Enjoy!

Tweeting Sweet Memories of Wyoming

This past July, Team Marine senior, Adrienne Hino, was awarded an Earthwatch fellowship in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where she researched, collected, and analyzed quantitative data on the nest shrubs and surrounding shrubs of songbirds, which contributed to a soon-to-be published scientific study addressing how nest shrub density affects nest success in yellow warblers, black-headed grosbeaks, American robins, and song sparrows in the Jackson Hole area. Using nest shrub density as an indication of how much human development exists in areas surrounding songbird habitats, the objective of the study was to measure the extent to which anthropogenic effects are taking on songbird populations and the environment. Her fellowship required collecting data and observing songbird habitats. She also gave a formal presentation to the Teton Science School in regards to the results of the 11 days she worked on the study. Adrienne often shares how much pride she takes in her contribution to the project because, while she was only able to work on it for 11 days, she was able to see firsthand the devastating effects humans are having on the environment from a very unique perspective. She continues to encourage her fellow team members to seek similar opportunities, “My fellowship experience was extremely educationally rewarding because it allowed me to conduct research outside of a traditional classroom setting and make a meaningful contribution to science. This experience meant so much to me because it offered me the opportunity, just as Team Marine does, to merge my love for nature and my passion for science.  It wasn’t until my trip in Wyoming, where I was immersed in nature, that I really realized the vitality of preserving our environment.” Being able to be within nature, she wasn’t just able to recognize a need for preservation of our environment, but she was also able to develop a true appreciation for and share a connection with nature. Reflecting back on the most valuable aspects of her trip, Adrienne expresses, “This experience has really taught me the importance in having the utmost patience, compassion, and pride in everything you do. I hope to use these values to create positive change in the world, as I continue to combat environmental issues.” Finally, she says, “Thank you so much to Renee Klein for encouraging me to apply for the fellowship, The Earthwatch Institute for providing me with such an amazing opportunity, and the Teton Science School for providing me such an amazing learning environment.”

To view more about the Songbirds of the Rockies Expedition, please see the official blog:

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Life Without Plastic’s Spork Donation

Team Marine has received the 50 sporks Mr. Kay ordered as well as the ten sporks that the company, Life Without Plastic, donated. We are very appreciative of their generous donation. Team Marine was very excited to receive the sporks and will continue to promote the message of switching from single-use utensils to sustainable alternatives. A big thank you to Jay Sinha from Life Without Plastic!


Visit their website here:

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Ocean Toilet Bowl 2012

Team Marine just sent out their press release about this year’s unique first flush encounter. The article has already been posted on the 5Gyres blog and on Surfrider Foundation’s facebook page. Thank you both for the continuous support!

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QuikSCience Challenge!!

Team Marine “Bag Team” competed in this year’s QuikSCience Challenge!

The QuikSCience challenge is a competition for middle and high school students. Each team creates a science project related  to marine or freshwater environments. The challenge is sponsored by the USC College Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies in partnership with Quiksilver Inc.

Each team (up to 6 students) submits:

  • A portfolio that includes all they’ve done
  • A lesson plan that they will teach to other students, and
  • A community service project
  • A research proposal
  • An Environmental Solution
  • and a 2min summary video clip

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Our project: Plastic Pollution

We learn a lot just by being in Team Marine, but this project gave us the opportunity to learn even more and apply all that we’ve learned to a meaningful and inspiring project. Not only this, but this project brought us closer together as a team and has taught us skills that we can use throughout the rest of our lives. We admit, some parts of the project were difficult, but we pulled through and had a great experience in the end. Thanks QuikSCience!!



Here’s a link to our 2-min video clips!



Earth Month Hero!

Today was the Earth Month kick off event hosted by the Wyland Foundation. I was nominated as an earth month hero by Team Marine’s coach, Benjamin Kay. I spoke in front of an audience which was a terrifying experience but in the end everything turned out ok. Earth month Heroes will be recognized in the Wyland Foundation and the KCBS 2/ KCal 9 websites. An awesome program that was brought to my attention during this event was the my water pledge. This pledge is to conserve water, save energy, and reduce pollution. It’s a great program that supports the 40th anniversary of the Clean Water Act.