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Whitsunday 2017 Clean Up

6th September 2017

Queensland Government Community Sustainability Action grants program
Shute Harbour and Long Island Sound

With a morning high tide we went straight to Shute Harbour where there is a bay with lots of cyclone debris on, this bay needs a high tide to reach we had about half an hour to get as much as we could off the beach before the tide dropped and we had to leave. We then headed down Long Island Sound stopping at most of the bays and beaches. A total of 4 road block barriers were found alongside lots of plastic items, boat wreckage and processed timber.  

10 volunteers
885kgs collected

5th September 2017

Queensland Government Community Sustainability Action grants program
Gloucester Island

The forecast looked fantastic, so we headed north to Gloucester Island, the first beach we visited was fairly impacted with marine debris however it was no way near as bad as we were expecting post TC Debbie. We cleaned 4 beaches finding mainly plastic items and micro plastic peices along with a huge tractor tyre. The wind picked up on the way back making it a wet journey home.  

11 volunteers
246 kgs collected

17th August 2017

Queensland Government Community Sustainability Action grants program
Hamilton Island

We headed straight out to Hamilton Island today, the first beach we cleaned was heavily impacted with marine debris especially micro plastics and it took us a while to get clean as the tiny plastic bits are so time consuming to remove. We cleaned two other beaches on Hamilton Island which were equally as impacted. All three of the beaches were inundated with green plastic triangles which we assume are used to put around young trees.

11 volunteers
245 kgs collected

12th August 2017

Cruise Whitsundays
Grimston Point

Today was our first Eco Ambassador event, we had five Eco Ambassadors on-board and we headed out to Grimston Point to clean-up the beach. It was very messy as it hadn't been cleaned since TC Debbie. All the Eco Ambassadors worked tirelessly and removed a massive amount of marine debris. After we had cleaned the beach we had a special surprise for the Eco Ambassadors, one of our turtles in care was ready for release so Luna, the juvenile Green turtle was released near Cannonvale beach.

9 volunteers
168 kgs collected

4th August 2017

Queensland Government Community Sustainability Action grants program
Border Island, Esk Island and Dumbell Island

Today we headed to Border Island and cleaned two beaches there that were heavily impacted with marine debris. We then headed over to Esk Island which Eco Barge has never cleaned! We know the reason why, it was almost completely clean! Still with some time up our sleeve after lunch we headed over to the south-east facing beach on Dumbell Island, this was fairly impacted - mainly with larger plastic items and plastic water bottles. It was a fantastic trip with sightings of Whales, Loggerhead Turtles and dolphins.

12 volunteers
192 kgs collected

19th July 2017

Queensland Government Community Sustainability Action grants program
South Molle, Shute Harbour

A beautiful glass out however the tides were not in our favour today, we had a dropping tide all day which made getting into some of the bays and beaches a bit tricky. We cleaned 4 beaches in total and removed an outstanding 450 kilograms. We visited one beach on South Molle Island which meant that we have completely cleaned South Molle since Cyclone Debbie. We then visited the bays in Shute Harbour which are only accessible via boat, these bays were trashed with boat debris from the cyclone. 

12 volunteers
450 kgs collected

8th July 2017

Reef Catchments
Hook Island

Yet another perfect day on the water, we had a smaller group today but they all worked just as hard. We returned to Hook Island to clean the beaches we didn't get to yesterday. The final beach cleaned was absolutely trashed with marine debris, and what looked like newer plastic items that hadn't been in the ocean long, this is typical of post cyclone debris. 

9 volunteers
298 kgs collected

7th July 2017

Reef Catchments
Hook Island

Another glass out!!! And another full boat of keen volunteers! Today we headed to Hook Island to have a look at some hotspot locations such as Saba Bay. Saba however, was surprisingly clean so we moved onto Mackerel Bay which was filthy. We only managed to clean two beaches before the barge was full, which shows the extent of the rubbish out there. Due to the cyclone the beaches are covered in natural debris such as tree branches, leaves and sticks, this has covered and tangled the marine debris causing some of it to be buried deep - especially the micro plastics.

12 volunteers
396 kgs collected

6th July 2017

Reef Catchments
Whitsunday Island

We have been waiting for this weather window since TC Debbie, today was a picture perfect day out on the water. We headed straight over to Whitsunday Island and round to the south east facing bays and beaches, we focussed most of our cleaning today at Turtle Bay which we found was full of marine debris. We found a lot of larger plastic items and a few bits of boat wreckage and a large tyre. With a full boat, the volunteers were keen and quick and it wasn't long until we filled the barge. This is a spot that will need to be revisited soon. 

12 volunteers
455 kgs collected

29th June 2017

Reef Catchments
Long Island, South Molle, North Molle

This was the first clean-up on the Islands since Tropical Cyclone Debbie. Since the Cyclone the winds have not died down so we have struggled to get out there! We headed out dreading to see the state of the beaches, we first went to Long Island and were surprised and the cleanliness of these beaches. We then headed to South Molle Island which was pretty dirty - most of the debris was plastic items but amongst it was cyclone debris including boat parts and large structural timber. We visited one beach on North Molle which was also fairly dirty. Great efforts by all the volunteers today and we hope this weather stays nice so that we can continue to clean the rest of the Whitsunday Islands.

12 volunteers
440 kgs collected

 

23rd March 2017

Reef Catchments
South Molle, Long Island, Hamilton Island and Whitsunday Island

It was a tough decision whether to cancel todays trip or not due to the rain. We decided to meet at the Barge and make a group decision. Nine volunteers were all still keen to head out to the Islands and clean-up despite the rain which showed true dedication! Five beaches were cleaned in total and an impressive 220 kilograms of marine debris as removed from the Whitsunday Islands. We want to say a huge thank you to the volunteers today who kept on cleaning with great spirits even though the weather was horrible!

9 volunteers
220 kgs collected

 

17th March 2017

Reef Catchments
Hook Island

It has been a while since our last Marine Debris Removal Trip due to scorching weather. Today was a little cooler but still hot! We had 11 fantastic volunteers who cleaned five beaches on Hook Island including Mackerel Bay, Saba Bay and Bottletop Beach. Bottletop beach was seen to have the most debris and consisted on mainly small plastics. A large oceanographic monitoring buoy was also found on one of the beaches. It was a great day back out on the water. 

11 volunteers
294 kgs collected













Marine debris removed from the
Whitsunday islands since July 2009
= 171,316 kilograms