Applications are being accepted through Nov. 1 for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s marine debris program, which engages communities in debris prevention and cleanup operations.
Typical grant awards range from $15,000 to $150,000, and may be used for prevention and debris removal projects that benefit coastal habitat, waterways and wildlife, including migratory fish. Up to $2 million is expected to be available for community-based marine debris removal projects in fiscal 2012.
NOAA officials said these projects involve removal of marine debris and derelict fishing gear, plus activities that offer social benefits for residents and their communities, and long-term ecological habitat improvements for NOAA trust resources.
Spokesmen for the Marine Conservation Alliance, with offices in Juneau and Seattle, said their efforts in protecting coastal habitat important to marine life and sea birds last year resulted in cleaning up over 400,000 pounds of debris from the shoreline of Alaska. That brought the non-profit organization’s total cleanup effort achievement since 2003 to over 2 million pounds of debris removed from Alaska’s shores.
More information on these grants can be found at the NOAA Restoration Center’s marine debris web page, www.habitat.noaa.gov/funding/mariedebris.html