Helping boaters and watercraft users learn what they need to legally, safely and cleanly boat on New York waters is the mission of the Discover Clean & Safe Boating campaign. Providing information on how they can prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species is an added focus for 2011.
The campaign, created in 2008 by New York Sea Grant Coastal Recreation and Tourism Specialist Dave White, is a collaboration of New York Sea Grant, the Boating Industry Association of Upstate New York, Yamaha/Clayton Marina, and Marathon Boat Group.
Marathon Boat Group has donated the use of a 16-foot “made in New York” Grumman Oneida fishing boat and a 12’9” canoe for the 2011 campaign; it provided a pontoon boat for the 2010 tour.
Morgan Recreational Supply and Taylor Made Products, both headquartered in New York State, have equipped the boat with the gear required and recommended for clean and safe boating on NY waters.
Event organizers are specially requesting the exhibit. By September 2011 the Discover Clean & Safe Boating exhibit will have engaged New Yorkers at all but one of the major marine trade association boat shows in upstate and at a variety of waterfront events along New York’s freshwater shoreline.
Information from the national Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers project will be available at the exhibit, which encourages diverse types of groups and individuals to use easy-to-implement practices to make a positive impact on slowing the spread of aquatic invasive species.
Aquatic invasive species can damage boat engines and steering equipment, reduce native game fish populations, degrade ecosystems, make lakes and rivers unusable by boaters and swimmers, and impact the economies of waterfront communities. White recently received a BoatUS Foundation commendation recognizing the creation of this consumer education campaign.