Marine Debris Campaign Reaches Tens of Thousands

The Mission-Aransas Research Reserve leads the charge through multi-partner, multimedia outreach.

Marine debris is a problem on the Texas coast, where beach volunteers pick up more than 500 tons of trash annually. A Port Aransas campaign led by the Mission-Aransas National Estuarine Research Reserve heightens awareness about leaving a clean ocean and coast via billboards, social media, outreach giveaways, and more. Their educational video on the importance of recycling fishing line has been viewed more than 40,000 times, showing that the campaign is making its mark.

Monofilament fishing line has a devastating impact on marine life when it becomes litter. Sea turtles and birds can sicken and die when becoming entangled in this product, which takes about 600 years to break down. A public service announcement also reinforces this message.

Unsightly marine debris risks a very profitable coastal economic sector. In 2015, Texas’ tourism and recreation ocean economy employed more than 48,000 people and tallied 1.9 billion in gross domestic product, according to NOAA’s Economics: National Ocean Watch.

The $72,000 campaign is funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. Additional partners include the Coastal Bend Bays & Estuaries Program, Coastal Conservation Association-Texas, Padre Island National Seashore, Surfrider Foundation, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and Texas Sea Grant. (2018)

More Information: Marine Debris Campaign

Partners: Coastal Bend Bays & Estuaries Program, Coastal Conservation Association-Texas, Mission-Aransas Research Reserve, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Padre Island National Seashore, Surfrider Foundation, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and Texas Sea Grant

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