Naknek, Alaska                                      Main hub for the Bristol Bay salmon fleet and processors

 

Fishing net recycling is expanding to Naknek and plans for a program will get underway this month.

“I’ll be visiting local radio stations, net menders, processors, gear sellers, landfill manager – these are all people who have reached out to me or I have been communicating with over the last year or so as I’m working on developing a fish net recycling program in Naknek.”  

Nicole Baker, founder and operator of Net Your Problem, will visit Naknek for a few days in early July.

“To talk with the community there and introduce the idea of fish net recycling ahead of what I hope to be launching my services there in the summer of 2020.”  

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Baker will be in Dillingham for three weeks taking a class at at the University of Washington salmon research camp.

She also will meet with the Curyung Tribe which has managed a net recycle program at the Dillingham Harbor since 2008.

“So I would like to talk with them about their program and if there is any ability to form new partnerships or how we might possibly scale up their operation there.”

Since 2017, Net Your Problem has shipped over half a million pounds of plastic fishing nets from Dutch Harbor and Kodiak for renewed life in Europe.

“Once the nets get there, they grind them up and melt them down and turn them into plastic pellets that they then resell to anyone interested in buying recycled plastics to turn into water bottles or phone cases or whatever you might choose to make out of plastic.”


Nets are still being taken in at Dutch Harbor and Baker says Kodiak has a net drop off deadline this summer of September 1 due to shipping logistics.

Fishing net recycle programs launched this spring in Southeast.

 

 

“Petersburg will be sending out container at the end of June. That’s web that’s been collected by the Petersburg Indian Association. In Haines, the Haines Friends of Recycling has collected seven nets so far during their monthly recycling event and more are being dropped off at the Net Loft. And in Juneau by the end of this summer we’ll be sending out a container that the recycle works group has collected.

Baker says her biggest news is that Net Your Problem has transitioned to an LLC and she can now hire employees. Two are signed on already in California and American Samoa.

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