Everyone loves taking a trip to the beach, especially once the summer temperature hits those triple digits. It’s comfortable, relaxing, and a great way to catch up with friends when you’re not dealing with your hectic life. However, our oceans are known to have a real waste problem. You may not be thinking about it when you’re sipping Mai Tai’s on the beach, but Andy Wirth suggests there are a number of simple steps you can take to help.

Anyone can help reduce the effects of climate change on the ocean by reducing your carbon footprint and energy consumption at home. Leave your car at home when possible and don’t overuse energy when you don’t have to. There’s an estimated 5 trillion pieces of plastic floating around in the ocean. To limit your contribution to this travesty use fewer plastic products. Simply carry around a reusable water bottle and use nondisposable containers for food. Other tips can be seen here.

While you can do your part to help, it looks like a 20-year old has a totally new approach to keep our oceans clean. Boyan Slat, founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup will soon be deploying the world’s first system to safely remove plastic waste from oceans. The proposed structure will float and capture plastic and other debris which will be picked up by a conveyor belt.

With such innovation, we can only hope that these efforts will give our oceans a second life.