CONEY ISLAND - The New York City initiative Clean Streets = Clean Beaches campaign launched today in an effort to keep trash off the shore.

The Department of Sanitation is hoping to inform the public that litter on city streets may end up on the beaches.

"When garbage is in the street, it gets washed into the sewers. Once it’s in the sewers, it could end up on the beach,” says Joan Leary Matthews, of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. “No one wants to go to a beach full of garbage and debris.”

The Department of Environmental Protection will hand out thousands of reusable tote bags throughout the summer at city beaches in an effort to lower the usage of disposable plastic bags.