Seabins: Just Another Way We Are Talking Trash!
Commitment to doing something has to be full circle. You cannot just have an initiative without showcasing that you are the leader that will go above and beyond to ensure success.
That is part of our mission with The Every Bottle Back campaign. We have to be fully committed to ensure success by understanding all the ways we can help keep our earth clean and beautiful.
With that in mind, we partnered with the American Beverage Foundation for a Healthy America to provide a grant that would fund the installation of three Seabins throughout the state of Florida.
Never heard of a Seabin? They are relatively new in North America with only a handful currently installed in Canada and the US, but they are proving to be a powerful tool in clean water initiatives.
We were able to take a few of our board members to not only see and learn about one of our Seabins but to also spend time at one of the research facilities that will benefit from having it on site.
On Earth Day, we toured the University of Florida Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience in Marineland, Florida, and what we learned about our relationship as humans to marine life research was amazing. From understanding the movement of fish in water for robotics applications to how bioluminescence from jellyfish can be injected in cancer cells to track their growth, the research conducted at the Whitney Lab proves how interconnected we all are.
Understanding the impact that researching marine life is having on humans, makes ensuring we are protecting our oceans that much more important.
Dr. Maia McGuire of Sea Grant Florida is overseeing the installation, training, and management of the Seabins funded through our Community Grant Program. She demonstrated how the device works to collect the waste while causing no harm to the surrounding sea life. The concept is quite simple, a recycle bin can for the ocean.
The first Seabin funded by the FBA Community Grant was installed at the Marineland Marina and is the first grant funded Seabin in Florida as well as being the first Seabin in our state to be installed in a clean marina.
The Seabins are managed by volunteers at the marina where they are installed. They are emptied once a day and the waste that is collected is initially used for research before being disposed of. A typical Seabin can collect up to 9 pounds of waste a day.
Research on the waste will help create education programs geared at helping consumers understand more about where their waste is going and its impact on marine life.
Dr. McGuire is currently working to determine placement for the other two Seabins funded by the grant and has plans to space them geographically to offer the best possible opportunity for research. We will continue to provide updates on this project throughout the year.
We are honored to be part of such an important and new initiative in Florida and look forward to learning more from the project as well as helping build awareness for marinas and consumers on Seabins and their impact.
We want to thank our members and partner organizations that joined us for this exciting installation as well as those that help make initiatives such as this possible.
Keep America Beautiful
Coca-Cola Bottling UNITED
Keurig Dr Pepper
Pepsi Refreshment Services
Attendees left to right:
- Dr. Maia McGuire, UF/IFAS Associate Program Leader for Marine and Coastal Extension, Florida Sea Grant Associate Director for Extension and Education
- Elizabeth DeWitt, President and CEO, Florida Beverage Association
- Travis Warren, Senior Manager, Public Affairs and Community Relations, Coke Florida
- Jamaal Medley, Territory Manager, Coke Florida
- Savanna Christy, Executive Director, Keep Florida Beautiful
- Hunter Graves, Environmental Health and Safety Solutions Manager, Coke Florida
- Dr. Joseph Ryan, Associate Professor of Biology, Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience Engineering & Sustainability, PepsiCo
To learn more about the Seabin Project and Florida Sea Grant please visit Fsgseabins.org.
For more information on the UF Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience and the extraordinary work they are doing www.whitney.ufl.edu.