by James Lyne
The USA's Rozalia Project and its 60ft sailing research vessel American Promise are sailing to clean marine debris and trash from local waters from the coasts of Maine to British Columbia with the Great Lakes in-between. James Lyne writes of the growing catastrophe:
The Rozalia Project’s 60ft sailing research vessel American Promise
We are poisoning and choking our marine ecosystems with marine debris.
Marine debris has the ability to entangle, get ingested, become coated with persistent organic pollutants and breakdown into a multitude of toxins. Rozalia Project's 2011 scientific research discovered marine debris densities of up to 105,500 pieces of marine debris and 2.25 miles of monofilament and rope fiber scraps in a square mile, in a critical whale feeding area in the Gulf of Maine.
The time is now to start cleaning our, rivers, lakes and oceans of this marine debris. Rozalia Project believes we can beat this global problem by empowering everybody to help clean our oceans, one piece at a time. Seven Billion people on Earth depend on our Ocean ecosystems for life as we know it. Seven billion people educated to the dangers of trash in our water and empowered to make a difference can start making headway in the job to clean our ocean planet.
Forty five community sailing centers, yacht clubs, maritime museums, schools, business and tall ships from the East, West and South coasts of North America have partnered with the Rozalia Project to host the Trash Tour 2012, and provide locations where the local communities can get involved in hands-on clean up, marine debris education programs and scientific research.
At each tour stop, Rozalia Project will run engaging and informative marine debris pick up and education programs, dockside and onboard American Promise for people of all ages. Participants will have the opportunity to hunt for and pick up trash from surface to the seafloor using nets as well as remotely operated vehicles (ROV) equipped with sonar and manipulators to locate and grab the trash. For student groups, the marine debris program is built around STEM concepts (science, technology, engineering and math).
Rozalia Project's goal for Trash Tour 2012 is to pick up 55,000 pieces of marine debris and have 14,500 people participate in their programs at 45 North American locations. In 2011, Rozalia Project's Trash Tour picked up 12,500 pieces of marine debris, had 1,481 people participate in their programs visiting 14 locations in the Northeast.
Tour locations in 2012 include New England from American Promise as well as stops in regions throughout the US. To date Trash Tour stops include:
Annapolis, MD (April 12-14)
Alexandria, VA (April 15)
Washington, DC (April 16-17)
May's Landing, NJ (April 18)
Philadelphia, PA (April 19)
Lehigh Valley Zoo, PA (April 21)
Burlington, VT (Earth Day, April 22)
Isles of shoals (June)
Newport, RI (June 25-28 *part of the America's Cup race education program)
Gloucester, MA (July)
Martha's Vineyard, MA
Woods Hole, MA
Rye, NY (August)
Long Beach, CA (dates to be determined, Fall)
San Pedro, CA (dates to be determined, Fall)
Los Angeles, CA (dates to be determined, Fall)
Specific locations & dates to be announced:
New York City area
New Orleans, LA
San Francisco, CA
Whidbey Island , WA
Florida, various locations
Bowen Island, BC
Salt Spring Island, BC
Tour stops in italics are from aboard American Promise.
All of Trash Tour 2012 shore stops feature events that are free and open to the public.
For more information about Trash Tour 2012 and Rozalia Project for a Clean Ocean, please visit our website.
About Rozalia Project for a Clean Ocean:
Rozalia Project for a Clean Ocean is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to find and recover marine debris from the surface to the sea floor through action, technology, outreach and research. The organization operates from the record-breaking circumnavigator now research-vessel, American Promise along the Atlantic coast and from dockside locations throughout North America. More information about Rozalia Project for a Clean Ocean here