Press "Enter" to skip to content

‘Ohana Motors donation helps Kaua‘i Surfrider

LIHU‘E — When the Surfrider Foundation discussed the need for a pickup to remove marine debris ‘opala from Kaua‘i’s shoreline, ‘Ohana Motors heard the plea and donated a used four-wheel drive Toyota Tacoma to answer the call.

Scott McCubbins, a co-lead of the Surfrider marine debris program, said the truck was donated jointly to the Surfrider and Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund to use in moving “massive amounts of marine debris from Kaua‘i’s shores.”

Dr. Carl Berg, the senior scientist for Kaua‘i Surfrider, said the collaborative effort, which started in 2016, concentrates on “quickly removing marine debris from the shorelines around the island of Kaua‘i.

Led by Barbara Weidner and McCubbins, the marine debris program includes community beach cleanups and net patrols.

“The amount of large marine debris, mainly fishing gear from the international oceanic fishing fleets, including nets, ropes, buoys and hard plastic containers removed from Kaua‘i’s shores peaked in 2017 with nearly 120,000 pounds collected, weighed and transported to Surfrider’s Marine Debris Processing Center in Kapa‘a,” Berg said.

Berg and a group of University of Hawai‘i oceanographers recently described in a scientific paper that the amount of marine debris collected is correlated with how close the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is to the Hawaiian Islands.

“The Garbage Patch is again moving closer to Hawai‘i,” Berg said. “In recent months, Cynthia Welti, a data analyst on the marine debris program, reports that recently, more than 5,000 pounds were removed in a single month, and the amount is increasing, adding to the urgency of the need for a large truck to remove the debris and move it to the Surfrider baseyard.”

Berg said this also raises the need for volunteers with the Surfrider and Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund to keep the island’s shores clean.

Surfrider has a marine debris hotline at 808-635-2593 for people to report large items for quick removal.

“We want to get debris out of the ocean as soon as possible so that it will not entangle turtles, whales or our Hawaiian monk seals,” Wiedner said. “People can also call the Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources marine debris hotline at 833-432-6387.”
Source: The Garden Island

Be First to Comment

    Leave a Reply