After being shucked, drowned in Tabasco and slurped by the dozen, the Louisiana oyster shell has finally found a way to return to its natural habitat. The Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL) has kicked off the state’s first formal oyster shell recycling program by collecting over 19,000 pounds of shells from New Orleans area restaurants during its initial weekend.
Empty shells also have a remarkable use. They are some of the best material to create new beds for raising new oysters and restoring oyster reefs. According to the Oyster Recovery Partnership, each shell can be home to 10 new oysters when recycled and replanted.
The goal of the CRCL Oyster Shell Recycling Program is to reuse oyster shell from participating New Orleans restaurants to restore oyster reefs and shoreline habitat across coastal Louisiana. The program is being made possible by a $1 million philanthropic gift from Shell Oil Company.
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