Two Marine Debris Program staffers are participating in NOAA’s annual mission to remove derelict nets and other marine debris from sensitive coral reefs and shorelines in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, one of the largest marine conservation areas in the world. About 52 tons of derelict fishing gear washes up in the Monument each year, threatening the pristine ecosystem.
By: Dianna Parker
Mission Log 3
After two days of operations at Maro Reef, and our small boat teams had already pulled 3,990 kilograms (8,796 pounds) of derelict nets out of the water.
The dumpster is filling up. How much can it possibly hold?
I’m assured that the nets compact themselves – forced into settling by the ship’s movement on the ocean surface. Once the nets reach the top (and at this rate, we most certainly will reach it), the remaining nets will go on the ship’s deck. Did I mention they are smelly from being in the water for so long? That should make for an interesting transit.