Posts tagged with

Pacific Islands

A Mission to Mālama Through Marine Debris Removal

Posted Fri, 09/24/2021 - 15:30

Wednesday, September 22 marked the completion of the marine debris removal mission in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. The marine debris removal team arrived at Pearl Harbor aboard the charter vessel IMUA along with the nearly 124,000 pounds of marine debris they removed during their 30-day mission. Marine debris removal is of critical importance to both the natural and cultural components of the monument. The NOAA Marine Debris Program is pleased to have partnered in this collaborative undertaking. 

Derelict Nets and Ghost Fishing: A Haunting Problem in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

Posted Wed, 09/15/2021 - 11:00

The delicate and extraordinary environment of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument (monument) receives an estimated 52 metric tons of derelict fishing gear every year from commercial fisheries all over the Pacific. Derelict fishing gear refers to nets, lines, pots, traps, and other fishing equipment that has been lost, abandoned, or discarded in the marine environment. Most modern fishing gear is made of long-lasting and/or synthetic materials, such as plastic and metal, that can remain in the environment for many years. Derelict nets and ghost fishing are a haunting problem in the monument, and their removal is an important part of protecting and preserving the unique native ecosystem of Papahānaumokuākea.

Marine Debris Removal Mission Begins in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

Posted Tue, 08/24/2021 - 01:38

The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument is integral to Native Hawaiian culture and is a sacred landscape. Unfortunately, marine debris has and continues to pose a significant threat to its natural and cultural resources. We are pleased to support the NOAA Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center’s Marine Debris Project team as they launch a 30-day mission in the monument with support from the non-profit Papahānaumokuākea Marine Debris Project.

Plastic in Paradise

Posted Tue, 07/27/2021 - 11:00

Located about 2,500 miles to the southwest of Hawai‘i, the U.S. unincorporated territory of American Samoa lies only a hundred miles and a jump across the international dateline from its cultural neighbor, the nation of Samoa. However, both islands share a fate similar to many Pacific island nations. Over the past few decades, problems with solid waste management have been exacerbated by limited space and a steadily increasing amount of imported goods and materials. Arizona State University, in collaboration with partners in American Samoa, received a grant from the NOAA Marine Debris Program to quantify the amount of microplastics and associated contaminants in American Samoa’s marine waters and marine organisms to better understand the potential risks to ecosystems and human health.

Lives and Livelihoods Disrupted by Marine Debris

Posted Mon, 06/07/2021 - 11:00

For some, marine debris may simply be an unsightly inconvenience, but for many people around the world it is a critical problem that can affect all aspects of life. This is particularly true for indigenous communities, whose deep understanding of and reliance on the natural environment and ocean, for subsistence, cultural connection, recreation, and economic opportunities, makes them especially aware of the damaging effects of marine debris. Community regional expertise on the impacts of marine debris and nuanced relationships with the environment shape many NOAA Marine Debris Program-supported projects around the country.

Home is Where the Ocean is Healthy: A Community-based Approach to Addressing Marine Debris

Posted Thu, 05/27/2021 - 11:00

Located in the middle of the North Pacific Ocean, the Hawaiian Archipelago is surrounded by thousands of miles of vast blue ocean. Hawai‘i’s crystal clear waters and landscapes are home to over 9,000 endemic species, making it one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet. Hawai`i’s marine animals face increasing threats from human activities and Hawaii Marine Animal Response works daily with NOAA, the State of Hawaii, and other partners to conserve protected marine animals and reduce threats to their survival.

Protecting the Pacific Through Resiliency and Creativity Shanelle.Naone Mon, 05/24/2021 - 11:00

The Pacific Ocean’s vast size and resources have brought those who call it home great abundance and a high level of resiliency. Today, these island communities rely on their resiliency to confront the issue of marine debris in an effort to protect the Pacific. Using community-based and creative approaches, dedicated organizations in the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and Hawai‘i are working to protect and restore marine habitats, prevent marine debris through product research and design, and mitigate the effects of derelict fishing gear on endangered and threatened species with the support of the NOAA Marine Debris Program. 

Locations and Languages: Marine Debris Curricula and Resources from Near and Far

Posted Wed, 08/05/2020 - 11:00

As students and teachers prepare for a new year of learning, we are sharing educational marine debris resources that highlight the problem in different locations and different languages. Marine debris is a constant and challenging threat to communities all over the world. It can travel on currents across the ocean, reach remote shorelines where very few people live, and cause major problems for both people and wildlife. No matter where you live, it's important for us all to understand the problem.

How Currents Carry Marine Debris to the Hawaiian Islands

Posted Mon, 07/06/2020 - 10:45

Imagine that you are watching a small paper boat float on a lake and suddenly a breeze pushes the boat all the way across to the other side. You can no longer see it and the boat is too far away to pick up and you consider it lost. Now imagine that the paper boat is a large commercial fishing net, and instead of a lake, it’s traveling on currents in the ocean. It too has moved away from its original location, moved out into the open ocean, and is considered lost or derelict. Marine debris of all sizes can move around the ocean, being pushed around by wind and currents, and traveling to far off locations, such as the Hawaiian Islands.

 

Encouraging Tomorrow’s Environmental Leaders Today jennifer.simms Wed, 06/03/2020 - 10:58

Locally sourced seafood is particularly important for island communities as they depend on the ocean for food and economic opportunities. This connects the health of the marine environment with overall public health. Such is the case in American Samoa, where local seafood is regularly consumed and where marine debris, including microplastics, has been identified as a priority pollutant.