Is boating in your summer plans? Whether you captain your own vessel or are simply along for the ride, it is important to remember how each of us can help maintain environmental quality. Through the Ohio Clean Marinas Program, marinas and boaters can learn to use simple, innovative solutions to keep Ohio’s coastal and inland waterway resources clean. After meeting a set of required and recommended best management practices, interested marinas can become certified as an Ohio Clean Marina and benefit from the public recognition and compliance assistance that helps grow their business.
Since 2006, the Ohio Clean Marinas Program has been spearheading the Ohio Shrink-Wrap Recycling Program to collect the low-density polyethylene used to cover boats and protect them from the harsh winter weather. Instead of going into landfills, to date more than 2.2 million pounds of that plastic has been collected and recycled by nearly 150 marinas and greenhouses – an excellent example of the potential for boaters and marinas to reduce their environmental impact. That 2.2 million pounds is a lot of plastic!
The Ohio Clean Marinas Program is a proactive partnership among the Ohio Sea Grant College Program and OSU Extension, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Lake Erie Marine Trades Association, and other public and private sector partners that are connected to Ohio’s recreational boating industry.
(Submitted by Sarah Orlando, Ohio Clean Marinas Program Coordinator, Ohio Sea Grant College Program)