Santa Rosa County kicked off their “Offer your Shell for Restoration” oyster recycling program. Instead of going to the landfill the shells will hopefully help restore oyster’s natural habitat in Santa Rosa County waterways. “It’s taking something that could be trash and recycling it and reusing it to become a part of the environment,” said Reggie Miller with Conversation Corp of the Emerald and Forgotten Coast.
This new recycling program is an initiative by Santa Rosa County and the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agriculture Sciences Extension with the help of the Conversation Corp of the Emerald Coast. The program is funded through “RESTORE” funds made available as a result of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. So far crews have collected over 1,500 pounds of oysters shells. In six months they will begin building the artificial reefs. “We take that dry and clean oyster shell and we use it create oyster reefs which act as a natural barrier reef on the shore,” Miller said.