Washing ablative bottom paint is a crime? - Page 3 - SailNet Community
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post #21 of 23 Old 05-07-2008
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I heave-to past the 3 mile limit to scrub the bottom of my boat, but I don't do it for environmental reasons. I do it because of the gators.

beej67, Checkered Past, 1980 32' Pearson 323, Panama City FL
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post #22 of 23 Old 05-07-2008
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It is definitely a question of dilution. True, ablative paint wears away slowly as the boat travels but the amount is miniscule compared to what is concentrated by pressure washing, scrubbing or sanding. Natural ablation also tends to occur in deeper, open water where it can be further diluted and carried about.

The amount of copper that could theoretically collect in a parking lot or marina basin is significant. When a good rainstorm washes it into nearby waters it can be toxic to many invertebrates. Take the typical marina on the E. coast. Tidal flows and water turnover tends to be subtle and slow due to the protected shallow nature of marina locations. Copper is toxic to most plankton, shellfish and other low ranking invertebrates found in coastal ecosystems.

Don't get me wrong I find all this stuff to be a bit extreme and would be more in favor of monitoring first to see if the problems are indeed ocurring.

I am fortunate enough to able to bring my boat home and live far from the water. I do my sanding and washing there.
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post #23 of 23 Old 05-09-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishboyneil View Post
It is definitely a question of dilution. True, ablative paint wears away slowly as the boat travels but the amount is miniscule compared to what is concentrated by pressure washing, scrubbing or sanding. Natural ablation also tends to occur in deeper, open water where it can be further diluted and carried about.
All copper-based anti foulings (abaltive or otherwise) leach copper throughout the course of their useful lifespans whether the boat is in motion or not. Further, most boats spend the vast majority of their lives sitting in a slip in a marina, doing little more than leaching copper into the water. There can be little doubt as to why there are elevated levels of cuprous oxide measured in virtually every marina that has been tested for it.
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