Yamaha Rightwaters will support the Billion Oyster Project, a community science project that has repopulated 75 million juvenile oysters in New York Harbor, in their mission to restore one billion by 2035. The Yamaha sustainability initiative will provide a Yamaha V MAX SHO® 115 outboard motor, which the non-profit group and the Urban Assembly New York Harbor School (Harbor School) will use to power an aluminum work skiff Tuff Boat® used for habitat restoration work and training students in vessel operation and maintenance.
“Oysters are key for the health and sustainability of New York Harbor,” said Richard Dorfman, Waterfront Director, Billion Oyster Project. “Yamaha’s donation will help us continue to operate our fleet as efficiently as possible and allow us to support oyster habitat restoration work with the help of Harbor School students.”
Billion Oyster Project works with thousands of volunteers, including teachers, students and families from more than 100 New York City schools across five boroughs. Their crew has already witnessed increased visibility and diverse wildlife near their 15 reef sites, where the 75 million juvenile oysters have been placed. Billion Oyster Project has also recycled more than 1,800,000 pounds of oyster shells from New York City restaurants, which they use to help reintroduce spat (young oysters) to the Hudson River, East River and other bodies of water that make up the New York Harbor estuary.
Working through the Yamaha Marine Technical School Partnership Program, Harbor School students will help install the Yamaha outboard on the Billion Oyster Project’s Tuff Boat® in early 2022.
“Billion Oyster Project and the New York Harbor School have been restoring the marine habitats of one of America’s most historic waterways,” said Martin Peters, Division Manager, Government Relations, Yamaha U.S. Marine Business Unit. “We hope this new outboard will give staff and students the reliable power they need to carry on their mission for many years.”
Billion Oyster Project is a nonprofit organization on a mission to restore oyster reefs to New York Harbor through public education initiatives. Why oysters? Their reefs provide habitat for many marine species, have the ability to filter water, and help shield New York City shorelines from storm damage. Founded on the belief that restoration without education is temporary, and observing that learning outcomes improve when students have the opportunity to work on real restoration projects, Billion Oyster Project collaborates with public schools. The crew designs STEM curriculum for NYC schools through the lens of oyster restoration, and engages Urban Assembly New York Harbor School students in large-scale restoration projects, collects discarded oyster shells from dozens of NYC restaurants, and engages the local community. The project has planted 75 million oysters across 12 acres and 15 reef sites, with the help of more than 8,000 students and 10,000 volunteers.
Yamaha Rightwaters™ is a national sustainability program that encompasses all of Yamaha Marine’s conservation and water quality efforts. Program initiatives include habitat restoration, support for scientific research, mitigation of invasive species, the reduction of marine debris and environmental stewardship education. Yamaha Rightwaters reinforces Yamaha’s long-standing history of natural resource conservation, support of sustainable recreational fishing and water resources and Angler Code of Ethics, which requires pro anglers to adhere to principles of stewardship for all marine resources.