By ecoRI News staff
Clean The Bay Inc., a Rhode Island-based nonprofit, recently received a $194,800 grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to remove marine debris from the Seekonk and Providence rivers and upper Narragansett Bay.
For more than a century, the Providence and Seekonk rivers and portions of the upper Narragansett Bay have been dirtied by broken and abandoned pilings, wrecked vessels, docks, auto parts, hardware, appliances and other trash. This debris harms local ecology and has rendered large portions of the waterways unusable to the public.
This funding will enable Clean The Bay to continue the removal of pilings and other marine debris. The organization will also use the funding for outreach and to foster volunteer opportunities with local partners to further clean-up efforts.
Last year, with the help of a $50,000 grant from Newport’s 11th Hour Racing, Clean The Bay conducted a pilot program in the Seekonk River to test its equipment for safely removing wooden pilings embedded in the riverbed. The results of that program proved Clean The Bay’s equipment highly effective, enabling the organization to pursue the NOAA funding.