By Outer Banks Voice on September 18, 2020
The North Carolina Coastal Federation will be removing large-scale marine debris in the Albemarle-Pamlico Sound with a grant award from the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Marine Debris Program. The federation will coordinate the project in partnership with Dare County and the N.C. Division of Coastal Management.
The major goal of this NOAA Marine Debris Program supported project is to remove at least 20 abandoned and derelict vessels that currently harm important habitat such as oyster reef, submerged aquatic vegetation, shallow subtidal and coastal wetlands in the Albemarle-Pamlico estuary. Division of Coastal Management staff identified numerous abandoned and derelict vessels and other large-scale marine debris that negatively impact different habitats within Currituck Banks and Kitty Hawk Woods component of the N.C. Coastal Reserve.
Additional abandoned and derelict vessels have been identified throughout Dare County and some pose a threat to safe navigation. The removal of medium- and large-scale marine debris is also anticipated to restore sections of submerged aquatic vegetation that provides essential fish habitat. This project seeks to provide an economical way to remove these vessels so they do not add to the debris problems nor continue to pose navigational hazards in the future.
Another goal of this grant funded project is to create a replicable case study on how to clean up abandoned and derelict vessels and other medium- and large-scale marine debris by combining local, state and federal resources and make it available to a broad range of stakeholders. The project is slated to begin this fall and will continue over the next 12-24 months. The federation will solicit a request for proposals from marine contractors to perform debris removal this fall and will also announce future opportunities to participate in volunteer based community cleanups.
To learn about the progress of this work and the federation’s efforts to create a coast that is free of marine debris, visit: nccoast.org/marinedebris. Contact Michael Flynn with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or 252-473-1607.