The Green Living Guy

Talk about debris tsunami. I mean it’s so bad that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and also other federal agencies are teaming up. That’s to document and also track potential marine debris generated by the Japan earthquake and tsunami. Especially in March.


EPA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, first of all, will issue a monthly bulletin. For that’s to keep key stakeholders informed about activities. This is an effort resulting from an EPA lead marine debris workshop. One that was also held in June in Honolulu. 

The workshop, part of the regular Oceania Regional Response Team meeting. For they also explored options for a coordinated response to the tsunami debris.  The ORRT, comprised of federal, state and U.S. Territory agencies.  Now it also has an area of responsibility that includes:

  1. Hawaii
  2. Guam
  3. American Samoa
  4. and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Tsunami EPA NOAA

Follow up meetings 

Follow up meetings resulted in a coordinated strategy for reporting of debris sightings. An advisory was also issued to U.S. flag vessels at the end of September. That by the Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD). For that was requesting voluntary reporting of significant debris sightings. All moreover though the open ocean. This is all to better characterize the extent and also the nature of this debris field.

In March 2011 the Japanese tsunami released debris report. It is estimated to be most noteworthy in the millions of tons into the Pacific Ocean.  For the University of Hawaii scientists have also developed computer models. Those that predict debris from the tsunami. For it could potentially reach Hawaii by March 2012. In addition, the U.S. West Coast by March 2013.

Soccer ball from Tsunami. Photo by David Baxter

Source: Environmental Protection Agency

For more information on EPA Region 9’s marine debris efforts and also to subscribe to the Tsunami Debris Bulletin. Please receive it via email visit:

For more information on Tsunami Debris and the NOAA Marine Debris Program visit: and Welcome Page 

For the U.S. DOT’s Advisory visit:

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