Recycle Hawai‘i wins grant to handle Japan tsunami marine debris on Big Isle


Recycle Hawaii has received a $20,000 grant award from the state Department of Health to help address Japan tsunami marine debris and keep Hawaii’s shorelines clean. The 501(c)3 educational organization is one of six Hawaii nonprofits to receive a grant under the program which was developed in conjunction with the state Department of Land and Natural Resources and focuses on potential debris originating from the March 2011 disaster.

“The six grants totaling $100,000 complement ongoing efforts by community groups that are already working to address marine debris, including debris originating from the Japan tsunami,” said Gary Gill, deputy director of the Environmental Health Administration. “For years, Hawaii has depended on volunteers to keep marine debris off our beaches. We are providing a little support for the very big job they do.”

“Hawaii Wildlife Fund is excited to partner with Recycle Hawaii on this upcoming DOH marine debris removal grant,” said Megan Lamson, who serves as project coordinator for HWF. “We look forward to this opportunity to turn some of the material collected during cleanup events into a resource.”

HWF volunteers will gather marine debris along a 10-mile stretch of coastline from Ka Lae to Waiohinu, which includes Kamilo Point in Ka‘u, one of the world’s largest accumulation points for ocean trash.

For more information about how to participate in an upcoming cleanup event, contact Megan Lamson at kahakai.cleanups@gmail.com.

To date, there have been eight confirmed tsunami debris items in Hawaii and more than 1,700 reports of potential debris on the mainland and Canada. The public is urged to report findings to DLNR at (808) 587-0400 or dlnr.marine.debris@hawaii.gov and to NOAA at disasterdebris@noaa.gov.

 

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