On Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019, on shorelines throughout the province, British Columbians will gather to clean up debris and help tackle plastic pollution.
Now in its 26th year, the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is a conservation effort that brings people to local beaches across the country, wherever water meets land. In B.C., 30 events will take place, from Richmond to Creston.
“I applaud all the volunteers who are joining this great cause,” said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy. “We’re working toward a plan that will see less plastic pollution end up in our waterways in the first place. We’ll be taking further action on plastics. In the meantime, British Columbians are already taking actions to clean our coast and protect the ocean.”
This year, there are more than 1,050 registered shoreline cleanups taking place throughout the province. Sheila Malcolmson, Parliamentary Secretary for Environment, will attend the event happening at Iona Beach near the Vancouver airport.
“B.C.’s waterways are vital to our economy and our culture,” said Malcolmson. “But the waters that give us so much are being impacted by us. I’m thrilled to join this movement.”
Malcolmson will be joined by representatives from WWF Canada and Ocean Wise, which are organizing the national events.
“The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup was born in B.C. out of dedicated volunteers,” said Lasse Gustavsson, president and CEO, Ocean Wise. “Canadian volunteers have cleaned close to 34,000 kilometres and 1.3 million kilograms of waste. This is an amazing accomplishment. We are looking towards a future of less plastic and more inspiring young people shaping the planet with their own hands.”
The cornerstone event will be held Saturday, but cleanups happen throughout the year. So far in 2019, Canadian volunteers have organized more than 2,000 cleanups, collecting more than 100,000 kilograms of waste along almost 3,500 kilometres of shoreline.
- To address marine-sourced plastics and abandoned vessels, the Province appointed Malcolmson, also MLA for Nanaimo, as Heyman’s special advisor on marine plastic debris.
- The Province is asking British Columbians for their thoughts on how to reduce plastics and promote recycling. That engagement ends Sept. 30.
- B.C. is a leader in creating industry led Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) recycling programs, currently with more programs than any other jurisdiction in North America. 315,000 tonnes of plastics, such as those in electronics, beverage containers and other packaging are already captured annually in B.C.’s EPR programs.
Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup: https://www.shorelinecleanup.ca/
For more information about the Province’s approach to plastics, visit: https://cleanbc.gov.bc.ca/plastics