Environment and Climate Change Strategy

Cleanup nets tonnes of plastics, marine gear, polystyrene and more

Print

Environment and Climate Change Strategy

Cleanup nets tonnes of plastics, marine gear, polystyrene and more

Media Contacts
Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
Media Relations
250 953-3834
Wilderness Tourism Association
admin@wilderness-tourism.bc.ca
250 655-4103
(flickr.com)
Media Contacts
Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
Media Relations
250 953-3834
Wilderness Tourism Association
admin@wilderness-tourism.bc.ca
250 655-4103

Backgrounders

Facts about marine debris removal

About the project:

  • The Small Ship Tour Operators Association of B.C. (SSTOA) and Wilderness Tourism Association of B.C. worked with the support of several coastal Indigenous Nations: the Wuikinuxv, Nuxalk, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo/Xai’xais, and Gitga’at.
  • The project included a fleet of nine ships and 17 skiffs, employing 111 SSTOA crew members and 69 members of First Nations communities.
  • Two 21-day expeditions took place between Aug. 18 and Sept. 28, 2020, along 540.5 kilometres of the outer shorelines of B.C.’s central coast and Queen Charlotte Sound.
  • Collectively, 127,060 kilograms (1,029 cubic metres) of beach-cast marine debris were collected from 401 sites and removed by helicopter, tug and barge.
  • More than half the debris collected consisted of derelict fishing gear. The rest consisted of polystyrene foam, marine goods (fuel cans, buckets, pipes, etc.), consumer goods (beverage/food containers, tires, clothes, appliances, etc.), hard plastics and metals.

Generally:

  • Globally, it has been estimated that more than 20 million tonnes of plastic waste enter aquatic ecosystems every year.
  • In 2019, the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup removed 163,505 kilograms of shoreline debris in Canada, an increase of 47,076 kilograms over 2018.
  • Slightly less than half of the collected debris in Canada in 2019 was removed from B.C. shorelines (77,836 kilograms).

Connect with the Ministry

Photos

View the Ministry's latest photos on Flickr.

Videos

Watch the Ministry's latest videos on YouTube.

Sound Bites

Listen to the Ministry's latest audio clips on SoundCloud.

View all Social Media