By: Anna Manyak, Knauss Fellow, NOAA Marine Debris Program
If you’ve ever been to a popular fishing spot or local marina, you’ve probably noticed one of these:
These bins are a product of the Reel In and Recycle program, a partnership between BoatUS Foundation, the NOAA Marine Debris Program, and National Fish and Wildlife Foundation with the goal of providing a place to dispose of old monofilament fishing line. Improperly disposed-of fishing line can entangle boat propellers, causing costly damage to vessels, or entangle marine animals, potentially leading to injury or death. The Reel In and Recycle program offers a positive solution to these impacts by providing a place to properly dispose of monofilament at popular fishing locations nationwide. Individuals, organizations, or marinas agree to host and maintain these bins, and send any collected fishing line to a Berkley recycling facility.
There are currently more than 2500 bins across the United States and growing! On April 18th, Jason Rolfe of the Marine Debris Program and I participated in a bin-building event at BoatUS headquarters in Alexandria, VA. Along with a number of other volunteers from other organizations, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, we constructed 600 bins within 2 hours! These bins were then shipped all over the country to help prevent old monofilament from becoming marine debris.
Interested in participating in the Reel In and Recycle program? Building and hosting a bin is a fun and easy way to help prevent marine debris! Visit the BoatUS Foundation website to learn more about how to build your own bin.