Nauticus is passionate about the preservation and conservation of our natural resources and marine environment. As a River Star Model Level Business and a certified Virginia Green attraction, Nauticus is committed to minimizing it’s environmental impacts by preventing pollution wherever feasible in it’s operations and educating the public on the importance of green practices through programs, exhibits and events.
Nauticus was awarded the “Sustained Distinguished Performance River Star Business” award by the Elizabeth River Project in 2021.
Nauticus was awarded the “Most Innovative Green Projects” award by the Virginia Green Travel Alliance in April 2019 for the installation of the Seabins program.
Youth Education Programs
We currently offer school and groups programs to educate about Climate Science and inspire even our youngest students to take action.
The Melt Down What is climate change? How does it affect day-to-day life? How can even the littlest kid help stop climate change? Students will answer these questions by observing experiments & collecting data on thermal expansion, glacial melting, ocean acidification, and more. They will categorize the causes and effects of sea level rise and develop personal action plans to help their communities. VA SOLs – K.1, K.10 1.1, 1.7, 1.8, 2.1, 2.5, 2.7, 3.1, 3.4, 3.5, 3.8, 4.1, 4.3, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 4.8, 5.1, 5.9
Climate Science Lab What is climate change? How does it affect day-to-day life? How can even the littlest kid help stop climate change? Students will answer these questions by observing experiments & collecting data on thermal expansion, glacial melting, ocean acidification, and more. They will categorize the causes and effects of sea level rise and develop personal action plans to help their communities. VA. learning Blocks – VA SOLs – K.1, K.10 1.1, 1.7, 1.8, 2.1, 2.5, 2.7, 3.1, 3.4, 3.5, 3.8, 4.1, 4.3, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 4.8, 5.1, 5.9
Pollution Solution We teach children not to litter, but plastic still gets into the ocean. How can we help the animals in the Chesapeake Bay? How can we make a change? Students will discover the impacts humans have on the environment and explore creative solutions for this issue, all while testing their engineering skills! VA. SOLs – 3.1, 3.5, 3.8, 4.1, 4.3, 4.7, 4.8, 5.1, 5.9, 6.1, 6.6, 6.8, 6.9, LS.1, LS.8, LS.9, BIO.1, BIO.8, ES.1, ES.6, ES.8, ES.10
Watershed Workshop The watersheds are the lungs of the ocean. We often know the health of the Chesapeake Bay if we know the health of our watershed. Students will dissect our aquatic habitat to discover how we are all connected to it. Through water quality testing, playing a fun game, and building a watershed model students will explain the role that watersheds play in our lives. VA. SOLs –K.1, k.10,k.11, 1.1, 1.4, 1.5, 2.1, 2.4, 2.5, 2.8, 3.1, 3.4, 3.5, 3.8, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.8, 5.1, 5.9, 6.1, 6.6, 6.8, 6.9, LS.1, LS.5, LS. 9, LS.11, BIO.1, BIO.8, ES.1, ES.6, ES.8, ES.10
Nauticus Youth Volunteers
Nauticus is proud to present our Youth Action Council, a group made of some of our most senior and dedicated Discovery Crew volunteers. The members began their career at Nauticus as part of the Discovery Crew, where they spoke to and educated thousands of guests over their time here. Throughout the year, they lead programs and educate visitors about ecology, environmental stewardship, naval history, and technology. As part of the YAC, members plan and lead community clean-ups around Nauticus’ campus, as well as participate in the Youth Ocean Conservation Summit in the winter. They have won awards for their clean-ups from the Elizabeth River Project when participating in their Youth Resiliency Expo. Join our Discovery Crew to help expand and make concrete changes to the community.
Our volunteers have educated thousands of museums guests about environmental conservation, climate change, and different ways they can take action at home. They have also been a driving force behind craft preparation as they help collect, create, and organize all of the recycled craft materials.
Interested in becoming a volunteer? Learn more.
Through a partnership with Warstila Defense, Inc., Nauticus has installed the first Seabin units on the East Coast.
Seabin, a floating trash bin located in the water at marinas, docks, yacht clubs and commercial ports, collect floating trash by drawing in water from the surface. Using low-energy submersible pumps, the water is then pumped back into the marina, leaving litter and debris trapped in the Seabin’s catch bag to be disposed of properly. The bins also have the potential to collect some of the oils and pollutants floating on the water’s surface.
Maintained by Nauticus Education Staff, volunteers and the Youth Action Council, the Seabin will contribute to the health of the waterway by cleaning as much as one ton of litter from the river each year. The three Seabin units are open to the public for viewing at the Nauticus Marina. Stay up to date on Seabin news by following Nauticus on Facebook.
Current Exhibits – Stewards of the Sea
In partnership with the Hampton Roads Naval Museum and Nauticus, U.S. Fleet Forces Command has created Stewards of the Sea: Defending Freedom, Protecting the Environment. This 1,000-square-foot, highly-interactive exhibit explores how the Navy protects marine life while fulfilling its mission.
Digital Membership Cards
In August 2020, Nauticus began offering digital membership cards to reduce our use of plastic (cards) and paper (renewal letters, card delivery, etc.) By going digital, we will avoid using thousands of sheets of paper and envelopes, and printing over 2,000 cards every year.
It also offers our Members a convenient way to access their membership cards through their smartphone wallet app. Digital membership cards will be offered to all Members in 2020, and will become the default option starting in 2021. To learn more, visit our Membership page.
Skip the Straw!
It is estimated that 119 billion pounds of plastic waste is currently in our oceans and waterways, and every year millions of pounds of new plastic waste builds up from the improper disposal of straws, cups, water bottles, plastic bags, and other single-use items.
In 2019, Nauticus committed to go straw free and switched providers in their cafe to offer only paper straws and purchase recyclable and even compostable food containers.
Nauticus also works with the cafe to promote sustainable seafood and other food choices.
Additional Virtual Programs & Activities
In 2020, we committed to reducing our use of single-use plastics or other consumable products in our educational programming and crafts. We accomplished this goal during Afro-futurism event held in February in celebration of Black History Month by using only recycled and recyclable products for all of our crafts and activities!
Nauticus has reaffirmed this commitment with our virtual programming and adventures as we craft and learn science with you at home. Below are several of our virtual offerings for families to enjoy environmentally friendly craft and STEM content.