DNR crew removes over 9000 lbs of debris
A Washington Department of Natural Resources crew normally tasked with removing invasive plant species has removed more than 9,000 pounds of marine debris from Willapa Bay.
Crew Supervisor Todd Brownlee said the month-long beach cleanup campaign was “extremely successful.” Much of the debris consisted of Styrofoam and plastic water bottles as well as discarded items like rugs and tires.
“We filled three 20-yard dumpers(sic) and had two truckloads of overflow to haul to the dump, as well as 30 to 35 contractor bags of debris,” Brownlee said.
The origin of the debris collected along Willapa Bay cannot be positively identified since items from many parts of the Pacific Rim, including buoys and consumer plastics, regularly wash up on Washington beaches. None of the items had an individual or company name, serial number or other identifying information.
Brownlee said the four-person crew found marine debris to be especially concentrated at Rhodesia Beach, Wilson Point and Bay Center, on the eastern shoreline.
DNR plans to use its crew in spring 2013 to check for marine debris on Willapa Bay beaches before the crew returns to eradicating spartina cordgrass that has invaded Willapa Bay’s waters and salt marshes.