Earth Day 2011 is right around the corner! … April 22nd …This year, EH Staff will be participating in a reef cleanup along the south coast of Maui, on Sunday April 24th. We’re hoping to break all former records for removing debris off the reefs (current record is 137 lbs removed)! We’ve decided that instead of just measuring the weight of the debris we remove, we will attempt to document how many individual coral colonies we save.

What kind of debris are we removing from Maui’s reefs?
Primarily, fishing line and tackle. Did you know it takes 600 years for fishing line to degrade in the environment? It’s a complex issue because the fishing line isn’t what actually kills the coral colonies; it’s the fact that the fishing line wrapped around the coral heads, creates an available space for algae to grow. If the fishing line is tangled all over the top of the coral head, then eventually the coral head will be covered in a ‘bonnet’ of algae, preventing it from getting the sunlight, nutrients, and clear water it needs to survive.

What are some local efforts where you can get involved?

On Maui:
4/22 – Haleakala Restoration 7:30a-2:30p (Pacific Whale Foundation)
4/23 – Malama Honokawai 9a-5p (Pacific Whale Foundation)
4/23 – Ho‘okipa Restoration 8a-11a
4/23 – Honolua Bay & Lipoa Point Cleanup  8a-11a (Save Honolua Coalition)
4/23 – Kahikili Cleanup  9a-2p  (Kaanapali Makai Watch)

Around the World:  EarthDay.org

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