Premier John Horgan has appointed Sheila Malcolmson, MLA for Nanaimo, as minister’s special advisor to George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, on marine debris protection.
“Derelict boats and discarded plastics pollute our waterways and put boater safety at risk. Sheila Malcolmson has worked with coastal communities to clean up marine debris and tackle the growing problem of marine plastics,” said Heyman. “I’m pleased Premier Horgan has asked MLA Malcolmson to work with me to find solutions and help us protect the marine environment that is so valued by British Columbians. My ministry has begun planning measures to further reduce plastic waste and Ms. Malcolmson will play an important role in our work.”
Malcolmson will serve under the direction of Heyman and has the following responsibilities:
- Make recommendations for a provincial action plan, in co-ordination with the federal government, to eliminate the environmental threats caused by derelict vessels including but not limited to:
- building on existing work and partnerships, collaborate with the federal government on potential development of a boat-licensing program to aid enforcement of regulations for the management of derelict boats;
- the feasibility of an environmental stewardship program to manage the end-of-life recycling of boats and marine infrastructure, as well as fibreglass and other elements of derelict boats;
- the feasibility of a “cash for clunkers” program for derelict vessels or those at the end of their useful life; and
- what lessons can be learned from the Washington state program for this problem.
- Make recommendations for provincial action to curb the disposal of plastics in the marine environment.