The NOAA Marine Debris Program (MDP) is pleased to share the 2021 Mid-Atlantic Marine Debris Action Plan. This document is the result of a collaborative effort between the MDP and local, state, and federal governments, nonprofits, industry, and academic institutions, and represents a partner-led effort to guide marine debris actions in the Mid-Atlantic for the next five years.
Marine debris is a transboundary problem across the Mid-Atlantic, shared throughout the region despite vast differences in geographic expanse, communities, state and local governments, legislation, and marine and coastal habitats. A shared regional community approach is needed to effectively address this problem. The Mid-Atlantic Marine Debris Action Plan (Action Plan) establishes a comprehensive framework for strategic action to help reduce the impacts of marine debris on the Mid-Atlantic and its coasts, people, and wildlife.
The Action Plan has four goals with strategies and objectives that define how each goal will be achieved. The goals are:
- Goal 1: Understand, Prevent, and Mitigate the Impacts of Consumer Debris
- Goal 2: Understand, Prevent, and Mitigate the Impacts of Derelict Fishing Gear
- Goal 3: Understand, Prevent, and Mitigate the Impacts of Microplastics and Microfibers
- Goal 4: Prevent and Mitigate the Contributions of Abandoned and Derelict Vessels, Shrink Wrap, Fiberglass, and Other Related Debris
The MDP undertook multiple steps to coordinate the development of the Action Plan, including: collaborating with the Mid-Atlantic community through one-on-one feedback calls; engaging through regionally specific events, forums, and channels; aligning with state and watershed marine debris plans; reviewing marine debris data sources; holding virtual workshops; and providing opportunities for written partner feedback to prioritize and finalize the actions.
In total, more than 150 participants from Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, and the District of Columbia were engaged in developing the Action Plan, and 96 partners committed to a total of 54 actions. The Action Plan also incorporates the principles of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion as core values across all goals.
The Action Plan encompasses work that will be undertaken in the next five years (2021-2026), and participants will provide annual updates on the status of actions.
The MDP greatly appreciates this collaborative effort. For more information, please contact Christy Kehoe (firstname.lastname@example.org).