Washington

Creation of new app allows citizens to help clean up the waters of Puget Sound

Two orcas jump out of the water between Tacoma’s Titlow Beach and Point Fosdick in December 2014.
Two orcas jump out of the water between Tacoma’s Titlow Beach and Point Fosdick in December 2014. Photo courtesy of Michael Charest

The state Department of Natural Resources has announced the launch of MyCoast Washington, a mobile app for the public to use to identify marine debris so it can be removed, according to a news release from the agency.

MyCoast allows users to take photographs of large marine debris, creosote-treated wood, deserted vessels, floats, old docks, storm surge damage, king tides and shoreline changes. The geo-located photos will be uploaded to the app, where DNR and its partners can use that information to prioritize future cleanups. DNR has just three people spearheading such cleanups.

“Now more than ever, it is our duty to safeguard Washington’s waters and beaches from toxins and pollutants,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz in the release. “The MyCoast app allows all Washingtonians to participate in protecting our waters, ensuring our people, salmon, and orcas have clean, healthy habitat.

“We’re working to speed up our efforts to restore Puget Sound, and this app lets anyone who cares about Puget Sound’s health join in.”

DNR is collaborating with the U.S. Geological Survey, Washington Sea Grant, the Snohomish County Marine Resource Committee, and the Northwest Straits Initiative on the project.

Logan Stanley: 360-754-5433, @LSscribe
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