192 Maʻalaea Road, Wailuku, HI, 96793 info@mocmarineinstitute.org Maui Sea Turtle Stranding Hotline: 808-286-2549


Marine pollution is one of the most significant issues impacting our ocean today.  High volumes of marine pollution continues to wash up and litter Hawaii’s shoreline, posing a risk to the island’s delicate ecosystems, marine life, and community health.

Facilitated by the NOAA Marine Debris Program and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Hawaiʻi Marine Debris Action Plan (HI-MDAP) is a collaborative effort between government agencies, private entities, nonprofits, and academic institutions designed to reduce the ecological, health and safety, and economic impacts of marine debris by 2020.

2018 Hawaiʻi Marine Debris Action Plan

2019 Hawaiʻi Marine Debris Action Plan Research Workshop

MOC Marine Institute has committed to the below action items, 2018 – 2020:

GOAL 1: Reduce Sources of Marine Debris through Prevention

  • Use social media as a platform for outreach to the general public.
  • Continue education and outreach at schools and universities, to residents and visitors.
  • Conduct education and outreach to residents and visitors through presentations and events.
  • Work with HI-MDAP research partners to relay scientific information to the community.
  • Participate in international symposiums to highlight relevance in Hawai‘i.
  • Offer assistance to businesses and hotels to increase plastic-free efforts.
  • Certify tour operators (ex. hotels) as Ocean Friendly Businesses.

GOAL 2: Reduce the Amount and Impacts of Ocean-Based Marine Debris

  • Continue education and outreach to fishers related to derelict gear and marine debris.
  • Determine best management practices in regard to coastline fishing gear and practices.

GOAL 3: Support and Sustain Marine Debris Removal

  • Identify and implement a standardized protocol for community-based removal efforts.
  • Continue to identify and prioritize cleanup sites and debris types on each island.
  • Continue engagement with NOAA marine wildlife staff regarding their priority regions.
  • Install fishing line recycling bins/containers at all harbors statewide.
  • Continue to facilitate, coordinate, and conduct regularly scheduled cleanups and net patrols.

GOAL 5: Conduct High-Quality Research to Understand Marine Debris

  • Continue to assess the impacts of marine debris on wildlife.