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Marine Health Summit in Florida Focuses on Addressing Marine Debris

JULY 7, 2017--The NOAA Marine Debris Program (MDP) participated in the Biscayne Bay Marine Health Summit (Summit) on June 28 at the Florida International University Biscayne Bay Campus in North Miami, Florida.

The summit brought together around 200 Miami-Dade community leaders and stakeholders seeking to creatively and effectively address the major problems associated with marine debris and other pollutants that impact Biscayne Bay. Charles Grisafi, the MDP Florida and Caribbean Regional Coordinator, presented an overview of the MDP’s work and shared the recently completed Florida Marine Debris Reduction Guidance Plan. He also participated on a panel to discuss solutions to the marine debris problems facing Biscayne Bay.

The Summit was used as a starting point to launch a coalition that will work together to develop a 10 year Action Plan to reduce, prevent, and remove marine debris and other pollutants in Biscayne Bay and other Miami-Dade County water bodies. Participants at the Summit determined the Action Plan will include prevention and education, research, engineering and design improvements, enforcement of existing policy, development of new policy, and improvements to waste recovery and management. The coalition will use the Florida Marine Debris Reduction Guidance Plan as a guide to help implement specific marine debris initiatives in Miami-Dade.

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Speaker stands next to a seated panel.
MDP Regional Coordinator, Charles Grisafi (far right), participates on a panel to discuss solutions to marine debris. Image credit: Luiz Rodrigues.