DLNR News Release-Marine Enforcement Unit Finds Relatively Little Rubbish After Waikiki Flotilla, July 6, 2018Posted on Jul 6, 2018 in Latest Department News
Many Revelers Picked-Up After Themselves
(Honolulu) – One benefit of a smaller and quieter than usual 4th of July Waikiki flotilla was a big reduction in the amount of trash accumulating in the ocean and on the beach. For several years volunteers from Sustainable Coastlines and other beach clean-up organizations had boats in the water and people on the beach to pick-up after the ocean-going party. This year the groups elected to focus their attention on regularly scheduled beach clean-ups and were not able to support post-flotilla rubbish removal.
After a long day Wednesday transporting exhausted partiers to shore via jet ski, the DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources (DOCARE) Marine Patrol Unit redeployed yesterday to assess the amount of trash left after the Independence Day event. Officers snorkeled about a mile off shore from Waikiki and report finding minimal ocean debris. DOCARE Officer Patrick Chong Tim, supervisor of the marine unit said, “Most of the people who had inflatable devices brought them back to shore with them. We even ferried several people in who’d picked up additional flotation toys and brought them all in at one time.” Officers report finding “minimal debris” in the ocean during their survey in depths ranging from 10-15 feet over reefs and sandy bottom.
On the beach it was the same story, with most people in the water and on land properly disposing of their rubbish. DLNR Chair Suzanne Case commented, “Between keeping everyone safe, encouraging people to clean-up after themselves, and an extremely long day for virtually all O‘ahu-based DOCARE officers, we’re pleased with the end result. While we remain concerned about the continuation of these flotillas from a public safety stand-point, the collective efforts of DOCARE, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Honolulu Ocean Safety & Lifeguard Services Division, the organizers of the Macfarlane Canoe Regatta, and private water craft operators, this was the safest, most trouble-free and clean flotilla we’ve seen. We appreciate the kokua that everyone showed, including those who participated in the flotilla.”
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(All video/images courtesy: DLNR)
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