'BeBot' is beach-cleaning robot designed to collect cigarette butts, bottle caps, other litter

An eco-friendly robot designed to remove litter from the beaches has been deployed in the Sunshine State.  

The solar-powered, remote-controlled device known as "BeBot" is manufactured by Poralu Marine.  It can collect items such as cigarette butts, bottle caps, food wrappers, and other plastic fragments.

BeBot was donated to the nonprofit Keep Florida Beautiful (KFB) by Surfing's Evolution and Preservation Foundation, an organization funded by the "Endless Summer" Florida license plate. 

"The machine is also silent, relatively light, and does not sift sand deep enough to harm the natural environment," said Savanna Christy, Keep Florida Beautiful's executive director.

On Friday, a BeBot unit made its debut in Cocoa Beach with Keep Brevard Beautiful and will travel around the state to be used by other KFB coastal affiliates.

Christy said BeBot does not replace the efforts of the thousands of volunteers who help to keep Florida beaches clean.

"But it does help to remove the smaller, hard-to-see pieces of litter stuck in the sand," Christy added. "Plus, BeBot captures the attention of beach-goers providing an opportunity to educate the public on marine debris and litter prevention -- it's a great way to spread awareness on a global issue."

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