The Gulf of Mexico Alliance (GOMA) announced in mid-November that projects within the Gulf Star Program will be awarded grants to fund efforts associated with water quality, habitat resources, marine debris, and data sharing. These grant awards are funded by the 2016 Gulf Star partners, including all five Gulf States, NOAA, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Shell, Freeport McMoRan, and the Nature Conservancy.
One of the grant awards went to Mississippi State University (MSU) in cooperation with Nature’s Academy for a project focused on engaging citizen scientists in marine debris research and outreach.
This program takes our coastal cleanups one step further – our students will now be engaged in collecting, sorting and analyzing sediment and water samples for microplastics. The data will be shared through our Citizen Science Database and will support efforts to inform the public of this “tiny” but toxic pervasive issue.
For more information on how we’re trying to change the environmental stewardship narrative, check out our GoFundMe campaign, which is specifically focused on providing an entire school’s worth of fifth graders with their own reusable water bottles. Change your local community and your local environment by joining us in the fight to create better informed environmental stewards within the next generation!