HI-MDAP Quarterly e-Newsletter


Purpose of the 

To establish a comprehensive framework for strategic action to reduce the ecological, health and safety, and economic impacts of marine debris in Hawai'i by 2020.

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Way to Go!

SCH Earth Day
Photo: SCH

The recent Earth Day Cleanup in Waimanalo broke a record with 1,548 volunteers who cleaned from Makapu'u to Bellows! Amazing!

Submitted by: Kahi Pacarro

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Collaboration Portal

Collaboration Portal

 Don't forget to check out our Pacific Islands Marine Debris Collaborative Portal! If you are interested in participating in a training, please reach out to Mark Manuel, NOAA Marine Debris Program Pacific Islands Regional Coordinator. 

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NOAA Marine Debris Program Updates


NOAA MDP grant proposal reviews have concluded. Results will be communicated in the upcoming weeks. Thank you to all the applicants! 

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Header Photo: NOAA staff remove a large derelict net from the shoreline of Pearl and Hermes Atoll. Photo: NOAA

Sixth International Marine Debris Conference

Hawai'i 6IMDC Participants
HI-MDAP partners and Hawai'i participants at 6IMDC


The Sixth International Marine Debris Conference took place on March 12-16 in San Diego, California. Mahalo nui to the 20+  Hawai'i participants for your valuable contributions to this international gathering. The event aimed to celebrate and encourage further global innovation, collaboration, and action around this far-reaching topic. Conference proceedings will be made available in the upcoming months.

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The Art of Trash

The Art of Trash
Cover design: Darris Hurst, Photos: Sean M. Hower

Submitted by: Gabrielle Schuerger 

"The Art of Trash does not purport to solve this problem; it’s not that all of our trash can suddenly become useful or beautiful art. Rather, it points out the ingenuity of people in the face of solving complex problems without easy solutions. It shows that with effort and creativity, we can create something good out of something daunting and terrible."

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Plastic Ingestion in STAL

Photo: David Hyrenbach

Submitted by: David Hyrenbach

Six endangered Short-tailed Albatross were necropsied. Ingested plastic in 3 of 4 juveniles (75%) and 1 of 2 adults (50.0%) was found. The mean mass of plastic ingested was 0.2921g +/- 0.3250 SD. Fragments were the most numerous plastic type by mass, accounting for 90.5%. Prevalence and loads in chicks of this species was not quantified in this study. 

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'The Last Straw'

The Last Straw

Submitted by: Jens Currie

Pacific Whale Foundation launches ‘The Last Straw’ campaign. Aimed at public awareness surrounding single-use plastics and marine debris, ‘The Last Straw’ will focus on convincing individuals to refuse or reuse plastic straws. PacWhale Eco-Adventures stopped serving plastic drinking straws in 2015 as part of their mission to protect our oceans through science and advocacy.

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Understanding Plastic Polymers

Jennifer Lynch and Melissa Jung at Melissa’s poster at 6IMDC

Submitted by: Jennifer Lynch

NIST and collaborators presented research results in the Chemistry of Marine Debris session at 6IMDC.  Jennifer Lynch described an FT-IR method for identifying polymers of plastic debris. Melissa Jung’s poster on polymers of ingested debris in sea turtles showed the type of debris most important to mitigate. Kayla Brignac’s poster on polymer composition of debris on windward vs leeward Hawaiian beaches helped point to sources.

Stewarding Maui's Reefs & Lands


Submitted by: Magen Schifiliti

The Blue‘Aina Campaign was started by Trilogy Excursions back in 2010. Blue‘Aina's objective is to cleanup and maintain Maui’s reefs and surrounding lands, educate the community, and lend volunteers and raise money to support a local non-profit. Blue‘Aina events are typically the first Sunday of every month and take place on the water or on land.

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