Special Funding Opportunity: Hurricane Response Marine Debris Removal Fund

Posted Tue, 04/23/2024 - 09:43

With funding from the NOAA Marine Debris Program, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation is seeking applications for approximately $6 million in grants to remove marine debris from impacted coastal areas. The program will primarily fund marine debris assessment, removal, restoration, and disposal activities in coastal communities in Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Puerto Rico, and South Carolina. Projects will prevent further damage to sensitive coastal habitats and species and reduce the impacts of marine debris on properties, community infrastructure, assets of economic importance, and navigation safety.

Breaking Down Plastic Facts and Myths for Earth Day

Posted Mon, 04/22/2024 - 09:27

Happy Earth Day from the NOAA Marine Debris Program! This week, also known as Earth Week, is centered around the theme of “Planet vs. Plastic”. As the U.S. Federal government’s lead for addressing marine debris, we compiled everything you need to know about plastic and its effects on the planet. There is a lot of information out there and we are “breaking down” some facts and common myths about plastic and marine debris. 

Kuaihelani: Taking a Closer Look at Marine Debris within the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

Posted Tue, 04/16/2024 - 19:36

Kuaihelani, meaning “the backbone of heaven,” describes a mythical floating island in the sky, possibly originating from the large lagoons that reflect the sky. This atoll is a Wildlife Refuge and part of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. The monument is the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in the world to be classified for its cultural and ecological importance. Still, it’s also impacted by the large fishing nets, plastics, and other debris that wash up on its shores. This debris can significantly impact the atoll's wildlife and habitats, and its removal is a critical part of protecting the health and cultural heritage of this area.


Special Funding Opportunity: Nationwide Fishing Trap Removal, Assessment, and Prevention Program

Posted Mon, 04/15/2024 - 08:07

We are pleased to announce with the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, a request for proposals under the Nationwide Fishing Trap Removal, Assessment, and Prevention (TRAP) Program. With funding from the NOAA Marine Debris Program provided by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science will award up to $1,475,000 in grants to remove derelict fishing traps throughout coastal waterways of the United States while collecting data to prevent future gear loss.

2024 Ocean Odyssey Marine Debris Awards for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Justice, and Accessibility

Posted Wed, 04/03/2024 - 16:04

Following a competitive review process, the NOAA Marine Debris Program and National Marine Sanctuary Foundation are pleased to announce the 12 recipients of the Ocean Odyssey Fiscal Year 2024 Marine Debris Awards for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Justice, and Accessibility (DEIJA). Learn more about the award recipients!

All The Tools You Need To Tackle Marine Debris

Posted Wed, 04/03/2024 - 13:52

The NOAA Marine Debris Program has all of the tools to engage partners and volunteers around the world to survey and record the amount and types of marine debris on shorelines.

Public participation in science goes by many names (“citizen science,” “community science,” and “volunteer monitoring” to name a  few) and takes many forms. Through the NOAA Marine Debris Monitoring and Assessment Project (MDMAP), the NOAA Marine Debris Program partners with the public to conduct surveys. These surveys are valuable scientific tools that are used to identify ways to prevent and track progress toward reduction of marine debris. Conducting a marine debris survey is also an engaging and empowering way to gain firsthand experience with the issue, while collecting authentic scientific data!

Hawaiian Monk Seals Face the Threat of Derelict Fishing Gear

Posted Wed, 03/20/2024 - 13:15

Hawaiian monk seals face many threats caused by humans, including food limitation and habitat loss. However, one of their most significant threats is marine debris. Hawaiian monk seals are observed stuck in nets and fishing gear more than almost any other pinniped (seal, sea lion, or walrus) species. Seals can be entangled in all types of derelict fishing gear, including nets, lines, and hooks from non-commercial and commercial fishing. Entanglement can make it difficult for seals to breathe, hunt for food, and escape from predators, potentially leading to injury or death. Entanglement is seen more frequently in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument.