Here’s a big thank you to local volunteers from the Elphinstone Community Association (ECA) who have been cleaning up the Elphinstone shoreline, and to Tom Howe of Coastal Tire for picking up debris with his truck.
Gord Bishop has been organizing the clean-up. He conducted a trial run of a small section of beach along with two helpers and found lot of styrofoam in all sizes along with bottles, cans and other human cast-offs. Gord has placed large white bags at intervals along the beach between Chaster House and Secret Beach. People have already been putting litter into them. Styrofoam is a particularly problematic as it lasts, well, pretty much forever, but does breaks into smaller and smaller bits, which are eaten by fish and birds.
Local residents are encouraged to pick up styrofoam and other litter to deposit into these bags (a blue ribbon marks the spot for each) and they will all be gathered up around mid February. Contact Gord at firstname.lastname@example.org (778-233-8250) if you can help.
Please note that seaweed must not be disturbed from now until late spring as critical small fish like herring are beginning to lay their eggs so it is recommended to confine clean-up to the high tide area. ECA secretary Gayle Neilson recommends good walking shoes, and bringing a bucket, bags, and gloves. A pole with a coat hanger wound around it and made into one or two prongs at the end is helpful for hooking styrofoam that’s been thrown into the bushes. Clippers may be useful, too.
New docks in the SCRD rural areas are being asked to meet environmental standards which call for NO use of styrofoam. However, old docks are out there, breaking up and spreading styrofoam into the ocean.