By: Dianna Parker
On Monday, partners in the Fishing for Energy initiative, including the NOAA Marine Debris Program, gathered at Covanta Energy-from-Waste facility in Haverhill, MA to celebrate a significant milestone: the facility has turned more than 300,000 pounds of derelict fishing gear into renewable electricity.
Fishing for Energy is an innovative public-private partnership that provides commercial fisherman a cost-free way to recycle old and unusable fishing gear. Schnitzer Steel collects the gear and recycles any metal, and then transports the remaining gear to Covanta facilities, where it is converted into energy. Since launching in 2008, Fishing for Energy has processed more than 2.2 million pounds of old fishing gear from 41 ports across the nation, a portion of which has been retrieved directly from the ocean by fishers.