General Land Office Wraps Up Aransas County Vessel Turn-In Program
19 inoperable and derelict vessels removed from coastal area
ARANSAS COUNTY — The Texas General Land Office (GLO) concluded its Vessel Turn-In Program (VTIP) in Aransas County, which was held September 9-10. During the event, the GLO, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD), Aransas County, Keep Aransas Beautiful and the City of Rockport together collected 19 vessels measuring 331 linear feet, as well as two trailers.
Removing abandoned vessels from coastal waters comes at a considerable expense—around $200-300 per foot. The GLO and its partners encourage communities to participate in VTIPs to avoid these steep costs and to keep their boats from becoming environmental or safety hazards. The VTIP was established under Commissioner George P. Bush in 2015 and has since hosted 29 events in various coastal communities— in total, 1,154 derelict and inoperable boats measuring 19,265 linear feet have been removed from coastal areas through these essential programs.
Abandoned vessels can leak fluids into coastal waters that can be harmful for the wetland environment, wildlife, and humans—and even the smallest oil spill can endanger Texas' precious natural resources. VTIPs are a proactive and collaborative effort that helps ensure a healthy coast before these vessels become a hazard.
The GLO’s Oil Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR) staff works with industry partners in the energy and commercial fishing sectors, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the public to support educational opportunities, daily water and shore patrols and firehouse-ready response teams, with the goal of preventing and immediately addressing environmental problems.
With hundreds of millions of barrels of crude oil and petroleum products passing through ports, bays, and beaches along the Texas Gulf annually, the OSPR team is on call 24/7, ensuring oil stays out of Texas coastal waters. The next VTIP event is scheduled for October 17-22 and will include the City of Port Isabel, South Padre Island, and the Port Isabel Navigation District.
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