Monday, September 14, 2009

The TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup!

I hate to break this to you, folks but recent studies have shown that our oceans have become incredibly huge repositories of garbage for both the developed and developing worlds.

Most of the marine debris in the world is comprised of plastic materials. The average proportion varies between 60 to 80% of total marine debris and nearly 80% of this debris comes from land-based sources.

Several earlier postings on Coastal Voices have touched on the "garbage patch" out in the North Pacific Gyre which is actually more of a thin soup of plastic fragments as well as larger pieces of flotsam and jetsam.
It is, as one journalist described it, humanity's own Giant Gyre of Junk!

While it is probably logistically too difficult to go out 1000 miles into the Pacific to attempt to clean up this mess we can all help out here closer to home to try and stem the flow of man made junk getting onto our beaches and further out to sea.

To that end one thing we can all do is to get involved with the TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, one of the largest conservation initiatives of the Vancouver Aquarium. What started out as a small beach cleanup conducted by a handful of Vancouver Aquarium employees has now grown into the second largest cleanup in the world. ( The U.S. is in first place - for now!)

So, here in Sointula, Living Oceans Society will be coordinating our community's participation in one of the largest contributors to the International Coastal Cleanup in the world.

What we have done in recent years and are planning for this year is to have volunteers come out on Saturday, September 26, get into small informal groups and hit the beaches, locating and picking up debris.
Your humble scribe for this blog posting, Vern Sampson, will be the coordinator for the Malcolm Island/Sointula beach cleanup. We already have some teams who have come forward with crew and pickup trucks. The Rough Bay Bunch have already staked out their coastal cleanup turf!
What we will be looking for are some Downtown Debris Dynamos and the Kaleva Kleanup Krowd! (Who came up with these names, anyway?)
Look for posters around town with more details or contact me at 250 973-6580, 250 973-2078 or:

If there are folks from other communities who wish to get into some friendly competition or wish to know more about what you or your group can do in your community in the cleanup campaign, by all means contact me or check out the TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup link above.

I'll post more details on Sointula's efforts in the next few days.

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