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Reef Safe Teams Up With Mote Marine Laboratory to Help Corals

Florida’s coral reefs are getting a boost — Reef Safe™ SunCare pledged this week to support reef research, conservation and education through a new fundraising partnership with Mote Marine Laboratory.

Reef Safe will donate merchandise and a portion of their proceeds to support the Protect Our Reefs program administered by Mote. They are also giving Floridians a special discount (see below for more details) on their products.

Protect Our Reefs funds coral science, restoration and education by Mote and other nonprofits with a focus on Florida’s coral reef tract — the only barrier reef in the continental U.S. and the third largest in the world. Funds are raised through sales of the Protect Our Reefs specialty license plate (get your plate at www.mote.org/4reef).

"After witnessing damage to our Florida Keys reef system over the past several decades, we wanted to make a difference, so we developed Reef Safe SunCare products to biodegrade in the ocean as well as be non-toxic to sea life," said Dan Knorr, President and CEO of Tropical Seas, the Ormond Beach, Fla.-based company that produces Reef Safe products. "Living in Florida, being surrounded by the ocean, we have a passion to protect it and its inhabitants so that future generations will enjoy it as well. By supporting Mote, we're strengthening our commitment to help such research organizations that give back to our environment and educate others on how to do the same. We look forward to working with Mote for years to come."

Starting this month, Reef Safe will:

  • Donate 2 percent of proceeds from sales in Florida to Mote for the Protect Our Reefs program to help restore and protect Florida’s coral reefs.
  • Offer a special 15-percent discount on Reef Safe products bought online by purchasers who give a Florida address and use the coupon code XXXXXX. An additional 10 percent of each purchase using the code will be donated to the Protect Our Reefs program. Shop now at: http://www.reefsafesuncare.com/
  • Donate $5,000 worth of sun-care products and funding to Mote’s 3rd Annual Florida Keys Ocean Festival. This free event takes place from noon-6 p.m. on March 24, 2012, at the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center in the Dr. Nancy Foster Florida Keys Environmental Complex. The complex is in the Truman Annex, 33 East Quay Road, Key West, FL 33040. The event will feature a kids’ fishing seminar, displays by educational and environmental nonprofits, arts and crafts, food and live music. Donations and proceeds support Mote’s coral reef research and restoration.
  • Donate special gift items to support coral reefs through Mote’s eBay store (expected in January at www.mote.org/ebay)
  • Support marketing of Protect Our Reefs license plate and provide a discount on sun-care products for Mote staff and education program participants.

“We’re thrilled that Reef Safe has chosen to support the Protect Our Reefs program, which in turn fuels some of the most vital reef science and restoration efforts in Florida,” said Dr. David Vaughan, manager of Mote’s Coral Reef Restoration Program. “Reef Safe offers a new way to help corals, in addition to the Protect Our Reefs license plate that Floridians have supported for so many years.”

About Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium

Founded in 1955, Mote Marine Laboratory is an independent nonprofit (501(c)3) marine research organization based in Sarasota, Fla., with field stations in eastern Sarasota County, Charlotte Harbor and the Florida Keys. Donations to Mote are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law. We are dedicated to advancing the science of the sea through the study of marine and estuarine ecosystems, through our public Mote Aquarium and through an education division that provides unique programs for all ages. Mote has seven centers for scientific research focusing on sharks, sea turtles and marine mammals, coral reefs, the study of toxins in the environment and their effect on human health, aquaculture, coastal ecology and fisheries enhancement. Showcasing this research is Mote Aquarium, open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 365 days a year. Learn more at www.mote.org.

About Reef Safe SunCare

Reef Safe™, manufactured and distributed by Ormond Beach, Fla. based Tropical Seas®,Inc., addresses well-documented concerns about the damage done to reefs and marine life by the 4,000 to 6,000 metric tons of toxic sunscreens estimated to wash off swimmers into the oceans every year. Reef Safe sunscreens were subjected to a comprehensive series of independent laboratory tests to support and authenticate the biodegradability of the lotions. The research found that Reef Safe products biodegrade on average in less than 90 days in seawater and freshwater. No evidence of toxicity to microorganisms and other sea life was detected. Research also found that Reef Safe's waterproof formula allows less than three percent of the product to come off in water, which compares favorably to the estimated 25 percent of mass-market brand lotions that come off in water.  For more information, visit www.tropicalseas.com or www.reefsafesuncare.com. Join the conversation on our Facebook Page or on Twitter @ReefSafeSunCare.