N.C. Coastal Federation begins project to remove derelict vessels along Outer Banks soundside

The Scrappy Doo is an abandoned and derelict vessel near Baum Point Island within the Kitty Hawk Woods Reserve. [photo courtesy North Carolina Coastal Federation]

A project began Monday to remove nearly two dozen abandoned and derelict vessels from soundside areas along the Outer Banks.

The North Carolina Coastal Federation is coordinating the project funded through a National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration’s Marine Debris Program grant award with Dare County and the state Division of Coastal Management.

The goal of the project is to remove at least 20 abandoned and derelict vessels that currently harm important habitat such as oyster reef, submerged aquatic vegetation, shallow subtidal and coastal wetlands in the Albemarle-Pamlico estuary, according to the federation.

Division of Coastal Management staff identified numerous abandoned and derelict vessels and other large-scale marine debris negatively impacting different habitats within the Currituck Banks and Kitty Hawk Woods component of the North Carolina Coastal Reserve.

Additional abandoned and derelict vessels have been identified throughout Dare County and some pose a threat to safe navigation.

The project will conclude when contractor Moran Environmental Recovery has removed the targeted vessels.

Another goal of this grant-funded project is to create a replicable case study on how to clean up abandoned and derelict vessels and other medium- and large-scale marine debris by combining local, state and federal resources and make it available to a broad range of stakeholders.

This effort is in conjunction with other North Carolina Marine Debris Action Plan efforts. The Action Plan provides a framework for strategically reducing the amount and impact of marine debris along North Carolina’s coast for the next five years.

To learn about the progress of this work and the federation’s efforts to create a coast that is free of marine debris, visit nccoast.org/marinedebris. Contact Michael Flynn with any questions at michaelf@nccoast.org or 252-473-1607.