1. Properly Pump Out Waste
- Never dump raw sewage into the water, anywhere.
- Buzzards Bay is a “No Discharge Zone.” That means it’s prohibited to discharge boat sewage. Store waste in your holding tank and pump it out at a designated pumpout station, like the Coalition’s seasonal pumpout service at the Cuttyhunk Harbor fuel dock.
2. Avoid Spills
- Avoid spilling fuel while refilling your tank. Use a funnel and don’t overfill.
- Keep bilge water clean by placing a pan under your engine or using a bilge sock to absorb oil.
- Store used oil in a lidded container. Turn it in at a designated oil recycling facility.
3. Follow Posted Regulations
- Always follow the speed limit, especially in vulnerable areas near shore. Creating wakes within 50 feet of shore can cause erosion of beaches and salt marshes.
- Obey local regulations for recreational fishing and shellfishing. Make sure you have the proper permits for your town, and follow guidelines for size and catch.
- Avoid sensitive shallow areas where eelgrass grows. Anchors and engine propellers can tear up eelgrass beds, which provide important habitat for fish, crabs, and bay scallops.
4. Clean Up Trash
- Dispose of trash properly when you get back to shore. Never throw litter overboard.
- Pick up trash you see floating in the water.
- Recycle used fishing line at your local bait shop or at a monofilament recycling site.
5. Use Safe Products
- Use only nontoxic, biodegradable cleaners to clean your boat. If possible, substitute natural and homemade boat cleaning products.
- Scrub your boat with a brush to minimize the use of cleaners.
- Use safe bottom paints on your boat. Anti-fouling paints can be toxic to marine life.
- Scrape and paint your boat away from the water.