Save the beaches

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UGA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have teamed up to create a cell phone app that will allow beachgoers to report debris that has washed onshore.

Available through iTunes and the Android Market, the easy-to-use Southeast Atlantic Marine Debris Tracker app can be downloaded for use on iPhones and Android phones.

The simple tool allows users to report and record the type and location of debris through GPS features pre-installed on a cell phone. The data submitted is posted on an interactive website (http://www.marinedebris.engr.uga.edu) that allows data to be viewed and downloaded for users to design plans to prevent marine debris.

Marine debris kills wildlife through ingestion and entanglement. It also can have an economic impact on the tourism industry and other coastal businesses by affecting the aesthetics of beaches and waterways.

For more on NOAA’s Marine Debris Program, see http://marinedebris.noaa.gov/.