Reducing Marine Debris Impacts to Lake Erie Fishery Habitat
Volunteers posing with trash.
A local group of volunteers removing marine debris as part of Clean Your Streams Day 2018. (Photo Credit: Partners for Clean Streams)

This project is removing at least 30,000 pounds of marine debris from the Maumee River and other tributaries and rivers in the greater Toledo, Ohio area. Partners for Clean Streams is working with partners to detect, assess, and coordinate removal of marine debris to prevent impacts to important fishery habitats.

Type of Project: Community-based Marine Debris Removal Grant

Region: Great lakes

Project Dates: August 2018 - January 2020

Who is involved?
With the support of a NOAA MDP Community-based Removal Grant, Partners for Clean Streams, community partners and volunteers are removing at least 30,000 pounds of marine debris from the Maumee River and other tributaries and rivers in the greater Toledo, Ohio area.

What is the project and why is it important?
The Maumee River and Maumee Bay in Lake Erie includes valuable in-water and nearshore habitat to sustain important recreational and commercial fish species such as the walleye, white bass, and yellow perch. Key fish spawning areas can be detrimentally affected by marine debris. By removing debris, this project is preventing negative impacts to these valuable fishery habitats.

Partners for Clean Streams (PCS) is working to remove at least 30,000 pounds of marine debris from the Toledo, Ohio area. Working closely with planning partners, the project team is detecting, assessing, and coordinating removal of this marine debris with over 1800 volunteers over a two-year period through their “Clean Your Streams” program. PCS is also focusing on a robust marine debris prevention and education effort. The team has developed a Marine Debris Tip Card, containing specific facts and  prevention tips about Great Lakes marine debris. They are distributing this tip card at cleanups to the volunteers, at educational talks, and in public outreach events. Additionally, PCS is working closely with the Road Runners, a large running club, to assist them in reducing the impact of the Glass City Marathon and other organized runs. The Glass City Marathon is a Boston qualifier event with as many as 10,000 participants.