Environment Minister Mary Polak joined volunteers to help cleanup Iona Beach in Richmond today, kicking off the 21st year of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup.
The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is a conservation effort of the Vancouver Aquarium and WWF, engaging Canadians across the country to help cleanup and rehabilitate local beaches, shorelines and waterways.
This year, there are 667 registered shoreline cleanups taking place throughout the province between Sept. 20 - 28, 2014. BC Parks and its community partners are co-ordinating events at the following eight locations:
- Robson Bight with CETUS Research and Conservation Society
- Elk River Falls with the Campbell River Environmental Committee
- China Beach with Surfrider Foundation
- Discovery Island Marine Park with BC Parks Staff
- Naikoon with BC Parks Staff
- Silver Lake with BC Parks Staff
- Kitasoo Spirit Bear Conservancy with Klemtu/Kitasoo Xai’xais First Nation
- Whiteswan Lake with St. Mary’s Anglers
BC Parks provides $500 per cleanup to community partners hosting shoreline cleanups in BC Parks - up to $5,000 per year.
In 2013, the total weight of litter collected from B.C. shorelines was 38,963 kilograms - enough to fill 4,433 garbage bags and 1,069 recycling bags.
The first organized cleanups began in 1994 in Stanley Park and the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup became a national program in 2002.
Mary Polak, Minister of Environment -
“British Columbians are proud of their beaches, parks and coastline and it’s wonderful to see such a strong volunteer effort each and every year to help with cleanups. The Province applauds the conservation work done through the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup and shares the common goal of protecting our coastal environment.”
Susan Debreceni, program manager, Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup -
“The Shoreline Cleanup is a great way for local communities to be champions of their own shoreline and the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is extremely grateful for the continued support of the province and the residents of B.C. as they tackle the threat of shoreline litter.”
- In 2013, 27,659 British Columbians registered to be part of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup -the highest participation rate across Canada.
- In 2013, British Columbians cleaned 1,315 kilometres of shoreline and removed 480,927 items from B.C. shores.
- The most common item removed was cigarette butts with 153,775 removed from shorelines during Fall 2013 cleanups in B.C.
- Across Canada, last year, participants removed 99,280 kilograms of litter from 3,035 kilometres of shoreline.
To find a shoreline cleanup near you, visit: http://www.shorelinecleanup.ca/en/search/cleanups/fall2014
Ministry of Environment