April 11, 2013
This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – The state needs to cut loose marine debris clean up money – a Kodiak project pays by the pound. More after this
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Plans are underway for clean ups of Alaska’s coastlines, especially the debris washing ashore from Japan’s tsunami two years ago. Nearly two million tons of who knows what is expected to hit Alaska’s shores. The state is getting $1 million from the Japanese government dedicated for tsunami debris clean up, but the money hasn’t been cut loose yet by lawmakers. Meanwhile, federal and state agencies have worked closely with Alaska groups to prioritize clean up areas.
Cut: The three hot spots are Kayak Island out of Prince William Sound, the outer coast of Hinchinbrook, the outer coast of the Kenai Peninsula, and then the northeast coasts of Afognak and Shuyak. Those are the three big hot spots. 2
Tom Pogson is with Island Trails Networks of Kodiak. He says boats could be hired for clean up contracts if the money comes through.
Cut: And it may involve hiring boats but likely it will involve dedicated clean up crews that will either lease a boat, have their own boat or some possibility there could be contracting of other boats. But right now it looks like we will be leasing a boat and having a dedicated crew that knows what they’re doing to go out and do the clean up. 4
Pogson says tsunami debris clean ups will end up piggy backing on other projects.
Cut: But since we don’t have an active presence or funding to be out there tracking the arrival of this stuff, we’re simply going to be monitoring the arrival through the course of our other funded projects. 6
Island Trails has expanded a setnet project to include anyone who cleans beaches away from the road system. It pays between 30-50 cents a pound to people who sign up.
Cut: Return the debris to Kodiak ock for 50 cents, if leave for a cannery or remote pick up by a clean up team, 30 cents. So it’s not just for setnetters anymore – it’s for anyone who has a boat and signs up. 9
In late July, the Network provides all expense paid trips to Tugidak Island for one week clean up stints.
Cut: It’s a stunning natural environment and simply from the point of view of being able to get there and see the place, a lot of people are signing on. 14 We still have quite a few slots open though, laff
Island Trails Network will talk about marine debris cleanup projects this week at ComFish – www.comfishalaska.com
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