Clean Beaches for All

Posted Fri, 06/29/2018 - 16:48

As much as we enjoy beaches for swimming, picnics, and fun in the sun, they are also home to diverse marine and land animals. The Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, is the largest fully protected marine conservation area on the planet. Its shores and land provide an important habitat to many unique animals. The Monument is home to a total of 23 species that are listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, including the threatened Hawaiian Green Sea Turtle, endangered Hawaiian monk seal, and the critically endangered Laysan Duck.

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The Results are in for the Status of Marine Debris on U.S. Shorelines!

Posted Wed, 06/27/2018 - 16:31

Have you ever wondered how much marine debris is on the shoreline of the United States, or what areas of the country have the most debris? What about the most common types of debris in different regions of the United States? These are a few of the questions that were answered by analyzing data from the Ocean Conservancy’s 30-year International Coastal Cleanup, as well as five years’ worth of data from NOAA's Marine Debris Monitoring and Assessment Project.  The NOAA Marine Debris Program funded a rigorous statistical analysis of both datasets performed by the Ocean Conservancy (OC), together with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). We are now pleased to share these exciting results!

What Goes Up, Must Come Down!

Posted Tue, 06/26/2018 - 20:37

The summer is a celebratory time when people gather for graduations, the Fourth of July, weddings, and to enjoy time at the beach. Balloons are often used during these special occasions as decorations and gifts, and are sometimes intentionally released into the air. Unfortunately, once they go up, they must also come down; balloons that are released into the air don’t just go away. There are many decoration alternatives to balloons, such as fabric bunting, lights, paper streamers, plants, and reusable ornaments, which add some flare to any celebration!

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California Ocean Litter Prevention Strategy: Addressing Marine Debris from Source to Sea

Posted Mon, 06/18/2018 - 11:00

By: Sherry Lippiatt, California Regional Coordinator for the NOAA Marine Debris Program

The NOAA Marine Debris Program (MDP) and California Ocean Protection Council (OPC) are pleased to announce the 2018 California Ocean Litter Prevention Strategy: Addressing Marine Debris from Source to Sea (Strategy). The Strategy identifies a broad range of actions aimed at preventing and reducing marine debris in California, and is the result of a wide range of input from government partners, non-governmental organizations, industry, and academics working to address the issue. The document provides a roadmap for action over the next six years, and is intended to increase collaboration and galvanize support for marine debris projects.

The Ins and Outs of Plastic Pollution in our Ocean krista.e.stegemann Fri, 06/08/2018 - 11:00

Happy World Ocean Day! Today is a day to stop and think about our ocean, how it helps us (so many ways!), and what we can do to make sure it stays healthy. This year’s theme is plastic pollution. Unfortunately, our ocean faces many threats, one of which is marine debris. Marine debris is a major issue that impacts our ocean and consequently, impacts us.

Learn more about plastic pollution– the most prevalent form of marine debris– and how we can work together to keep our ocean plastic-free.

Preventing Marine Debris With Effective Outreach

Posted Thu, 05/31/2018 - 11:00

There are many ways to address the marine debris issue. There is great value in removing the vast amount of debris that already clogs our waters, and in learning more about the problem through scientific research in order to better address it in the future. However, the ultimate solution to the problem lies in one general approach: prevention. Preventing debris from entering our waters in the first place, or effectively “turning off the tap,” is how we can stop this problem from continuing to get worse. There are many ways in which to go about preventing marine debris—starting with curbing your own contribution by following the 4Rs and choosing to refuse, reduce, reuse, and recycle; or going further by spreading the word to others within your family, friends group, community, or even broader if you can. Ensuring you and others are knowledgeable about the issue and know how to help is an extremely important step in the fight against marine debris! Several organizations, groups, and individuals are dedicating time to marine debris prevention. One recent example of a novel awareness and prevention effort is through the Ocean Plastics Lab, an international travelling exhibit, composed of four shipping containers converted into an outdoor and interactive display.

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Watch the Winning PSA Videos from the Ohio Marine Debris Challenge krista.e.stegemann Thu, 05/24/2018 - 11:00

By: Sarah Lowe, Great Lakes Regional Coordinator for the NOAA Marine Debris Program

The NOAA Marine Debris Program is excited to announce the winners of the third annual Ohio Marine Debris Challenge! This contest is open every year to students in grades 9-12 who are enrolled in recognized public, private, and home schools in Ohio’s Lake Erie coastal communities. Students complete lessons and create a public service announcement to help raise awareness of marine debris. Winning teams were recognized last week at an awards ceremony at Cedar Point Amusement Park and were given recognition by members of congress, including Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, Congressman Jim Renacci, Senator Rob Portman, and Senator Sherrod Brown. Check out this year's winners!