During the first-ever Great Port Clean-Up, 342 volunteers collected 19,285 pounds of trash (over 9.6k tons), preventing it from entering the waters of Tampa Bay. On Earth Day, April 22, 2021, Port Tampa Bay, the Propeller Club of Tampa Bay and Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful hosted a clean-up event around the waters of Tampa Bay. Port partners and other dedicated community volunteers safely removed trash and marine debris from 23 sites in and around our port. In addition, 350 invasive plant species were removed and 750 mangroves were transplanted to ensure they take root during the event. While the majority of this debris originated from outside of the port, the Port Tampa Bay maritime community is dedicated to doing their part to eliminate marine debris and support trash-free waters in Tampa Bay.
"I am thrilled to celebrate the success of our first-ever Great Port Clean-Up. To see our entire maritime community come together and remove significant amounts of trash and debris from our area's waters is inspiring. This is just one of many environmental sustainability projects that Port Tampa Bay remains dedicated," said Paul Anderson, Port Tampa Bay President & CEO.
"The inaugural Great Port Cleanup presented by Port Tampa Bay and Tampa Bay Propeller Club was widely successful. We are fortunate that even during unprecedented times, we can count on our volunteers and community to come together and support the mission of Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful," explained Debbie Evensen, Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful's Executive Director.
The event was a call to action for the port community to support the ongoing efforts to keep Tampa Bay a beautiful place to live, work, and play. Plans are already underway for next year's Great Port Clean-Up.