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Take 2 for Texas

HARC, Black Cat GIS

Amanda Hackney

Houston Advanced Research Center and Black Cat GIS and Biological Services have partnered up to assess of marine debris in the Galveston Bay watershed thanks to a generous grant from the Garver Black Hilyard Family Foundation.

The project consists of comparing and refining techniques to assess marine debris to get estimates on the amount of plastic pollution along Texas beaches, bayous, and waterways.

This project gives every Texan the opportunity to participate! We are recruiting volunteers from non-profit organizations, scout groups, schools, clubs, and even families to help us in reporting trash in and around area waterways.
Our Goals:

-Gather information on marine debris in 100 foot long shoreline transects.

-Document amounts and types of consumer products

-Gather data on where items are deposited on waterways (shorelines or higher on banks/ dunes)

​-Test methods to better estimate trash collected during cleanups 

-Gather information on cleanups related to number of bags, volume of trash, weight of trash, individual item counts, etc.

-Collect data on total trash removed to develop a standardized report metric- allowing for better effort comparisons across years and sites.

​-Test a plastic bottle count method

-Count as many bottles observer can see along a set shoreline distance.

-Compare data with bagged trash collected to discover correlations.

Know a location we should check out?

​Possible sites need to have:

-Easy access/ parking for volunteers (like a public park)

-Non-steep slopes with easy to walk terrain

-Ability to drive nearby for loading and transport of bags

-Good contact for garbage removal post- event OR the ability for volunteers to take bagged trash away for proper disposal

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