This year marks 22 years for the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, announced Parliamentary Secretary for Energy Literacy and the Environment Jordan Sturdy.
Sturdy, on behalf of Environment Minister Mary Polak, helped volunteers pick up litter and debris on Iona Beach in Richmond today.
The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is a conservation effort of the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre and WWF-Canada, encouraging Canadians all over the country to do their part to make a difference in their communities by working together to keep local beaches, shorelines and waterways clean.
This year, there are 762 shoreline cleanups registered throughout the province. Over the next few months, more than 200 cleanups will take place, including the following events at BC Parks:
- Hesquiaht Peninsula Park, with the Vancouver Aquarium and Clayoquot Biosphere Trust
- Bamberton Park
- Robson Bight Ecological Reserve with Cetus Research and Conservation Society
- Dahl Lake Park with Norman Lake Community Association
- Stikine River Park
BC Parks provides up to $500 per cleanup to community partners hosting cleanups in BC Parks, and up to $5,000 per year.
In 2014, British Columbians removed 42,279 kilograms of litter from B.C.’s shorelines – enough to fill 3,838 garbage bags and 1,712 recycling bags.
The first organized cleanup was in 1994, led by a small team of employees and volunteers from the Vancouver Aquarium. Today, the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is recognized as one of the largest direct action conservation programs, as well as the most significant contributor to the International Coastal Cleanup in Canada.
Mary Polak, Minister of Environment –
"Through the continual efforts of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup and countless volunteers, B.C.’s shorelines can proudly show their beauty. As B.C.'s Minister of Environment, I encourage all British Columbians to get involved in a shoreline cleanup near you!”
Katie Le Souef, program manager, Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup –
“The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup encourages everyone to see the importance of their individual actions, no matter how big or small. We are extremely grateful for the continued support of the province and the residents of B.C. as they protect our environment from the threat of shoreline litter.”
Jordan Sturdy, Parliamentary Secretary for Energy Literacy and the Environment –
“It is encouraging to see so many people take time out of their daily lives to pitch in and make a difference removing litter from our shorelines. It is important that we all work together to ensure the health of our waters and shorelines, and the communities that depend on them.”
- In 2014, 22,462 British Columbians registered to be part of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup – the highest participation rate in Canada.
- In 2014, British Columbians cleaned 1,136 kilometres of shoreline and removed 469,672 items from B.C. shores.
- The most common item picked up was cigarette butts with a total of 180,465 removed from shorelines.
- The most peculiar items found from the 2014 cleanup in B.C. include:
- Back scratcher
- Bicycle with a weed whacker attached
- Fake moustache
- Jar of wasps
- Purple wig
- Wedding ring
- Across Canada, last year, participants removed 139,262 kilograms of littler from 2,563 kilometres of shoreline.
The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is a national program providing all Canadians the opportunity to make a difference in their local communities.
Look for a shoreline cleanup near you: http://shorelinecleanup.ca/