Beach-cleaning robot ‘BeBot’ to patrol Pinellas beaches all July

Beach-cleaning robot ‘BeBot’ to patrol Pinellas beaches all July

a KPB employee guiding the BeBot
Photo courtesy Keep Pinellas Beautiful

Beach-goers in the month of July may notice a new patrol strolling the sands of Pinellas County beaches. At a press conference this morning, Keep Pinellas Beautiful unveiled BeBot, a beach cleaning robot that digs into the sand to extract litter and debris buried below the surface.

Today’s launch at Madeira Beach was the first of more than a dozen robot clean up days scheduled throughout the area, including a July 20th date at Spa Beach Park on the St. Pete Pier. BeBot, developed by marine manufacturer Poralu Marine, is an eco-friendly beach cleaning robot that mechanically sifts through sand to remove plastic waste and other debris without harming the local environment.

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BeBot’s debut day was symbolic, as July 4th is annually the busiest day on beaches in America, making July 5th the day when cleanup is most needed. The machine is operated by a remote control and is powered by battery and a solar panel. A trained driver/operator is able to remove the trash once BeBot is full. By being remotely controlled, the operator is able to ensure that the roving cleaner does not run into humans or wildlife.

July’s BeBot tour through Pinellas County will be followed by several more throughout the state, and in large part, it is actually thanks to the many “Endless Summer” Florida license plates that the beach-cleaning robot is here. Proceeds from the plate benefit Surfing’s Evolution and Preservation Foundation who then purchased the BeBot for the state.

At each BeBot cleanup day, volunteers are invited to join in the cleaning, and then take part in the removal of the litter picked up. Advance registration is encouraged, and participation is free. The full list of dates and sites can be found below. Learn more at kpbcares.org.

BeBot cleanup and demo days

  • North Redington Beach Cleanup and BeBot Demo @ DoubleTree Beach Resort – July 6th
  • Clearwater Beach Cleanup and BeBot Demo @ Bob Heilman’s Beachcomber – July 8th
  • St. Pete Beach Cleanup and BeBot Demo @ TradeWinds – July 9th
  • Treasure Island Cleanup and BeBot Demo @ Bilmar Beach Resort – July 10th
  • Honeymoon Island State Park Cleanup and BeBot Showcase – July 13th
  • Indian Shores Cleanup and BeBot Demo – July 14th
  • Ft. De Soto Park Cleanup and BeBot Demo – July 15th
  • Upham Beach Cleanup and BeBot Demo with Green Peacemakers – July 17th
  • St. Pete Pier Spa Beach Cleanup and Demo – July 20th
  • Fred Howard Park Cleanup and BeBot Demo – July 22nd
  • Clearwater Beach Cleanup and BeBot Demo @ Winter The Dolphin’s Beach Club – July 25th
  • Tarpon Springs Sunset Beach Cleanup and BeBot Demo – July 27th
  • Gandy Beach Cleanup and BeBot Demo – July 30th

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