A sunken tugboat will be raised from the spot where it has sat near Alameda for decades Monday as part of a two-month-long cleanup of the Oakland Estuary.
The 105-foot long tugboat, which has been nicknamed "Captain Al," poses hazards to recreational sailors and releases contaminants into the environment, according to officials with the California Department of Resources and Recycling and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which are leading the cleanup effort.
It is one of two vessels being removed during the cleanup effort, which will remove marine debris and other navigational hazards as well as toxic materials such as asbestos and heavy metals, officials said.
"Derelict boats and other debris in the Oakland Estuary are damaging the environment and putting public safety at risk," CalRecycle Director Caroll Mortensen said in a statement.
Jared Blumenfeld, the U.S. EPA's regional administrator, said his agency would pursue those responsible for environmental violations.
The Oakland Estuary is home to the Port of Oakland and is used by thousands of boats each year, officials said.
The cleanup effort, which was initially launched at the request of Oakland Police, is being paid for by a $3 million grant from the EPA and $1.3 million from CalRecycle. The state will be partially reimbursed by a $650,000 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
The Bay Ship and Yacht Company will also contribute $75,000 as part of a mitigation fund for its new drydock, officials said.
Copyright © 2013 by Bay City News, Inc. Republication, re-transmission or reuse without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited.