CLEAN TECH: A Seabin in action. The Fraser Coast Regional Council will help fund one in Hervey Bay’s Great Sandy Strait Marina. Picture: John Appleyard
CLEAN TECH: A Seabin in action. The Fraser Coast Regional Council will help fund one in Hervey Bay’s Great Sandy Strait Marina. Picture: John Appleyard

CLEANER OCEANS: Student marine project gets council backing

UNIVERSITY-run project designed to remove tonnes of marine litter from the ocean has received funds from Fraser Coast Regional Council.

The floating Seabin, which can collect more than a tonne of debris from local waters each year, was installed in the Hervey Bay Great Sandy Strait Marina this weekend under the watch of the student-based Fraser Coast Intrepid Landcare group.

It will be the first of its type on Australia’s east coast.

The council will pay the $7000 for the bin and ongoing costs.

Student Jessica Sellke, who helped found the group last year, said it was exciting to see the group’s message resonate with the community.

“Our aim is to not only stop the flow of plastics and other debris from beaches into the ocean but to remove some of the rubbish already in the water,” Ms Sellke said.

“We plan to record and analyse the rubbish being collected by the bin to provide insights into the sea debris in the Great Sandy Strait.

“We hope that once installed, the Seabin can be used by other schools and groups as a tool for educating about pollution and human impacts on the environment.”

The Seabin acts like an ocean vacuum cleaner, skimming in floating debris, plastics, oil and organic matter while pumping clean water back into the marina.

Mayor George Seymour said he was inspired to help the students after hearing a presentation by the group at the International Whale Conference in Hervey Bay.