Shipwrecks Removed From Protected Coral Reefs
Now there's hope for the reefs' recovery. But it could take years.
On January 29, the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) completed a $5.5 million conservation project to remove three wrecked ships, weighing a total of one million pounds, from protected wildlife areas in the Pacific Ocean.
The restoration project is part of an ongoing investigation to see how shipwrecks damage the coral reefs and how fast the reefs can recover after the vessels are removed.
The three ships, which all sank within the past 15 years, were in the Pacific Remote Islands National Wildlife Refuge and caused miles of damage to two important coral reefs: Palmyra Atoll and Kingman Reef. These wildlife refuges, located in the 2,575-mile stretch between Hawaii and American Samoa, are home to 176 species of coral and 418 types