Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Province to look for ways to expand on solutions to abandoned boats issue in coastal waters

One of the estimated 2,400 abandoned boats along the BC coast
The Province is looking to address the issue with work underway
on a Provincial Action plan 

The Province of British Columbia is looking for ideas from the public as to how they should approach the issue of abandoned vessels, first looking to prevent them from becoming abandoned in the first place and then o keep the salvaged debris out of the province's landfills.

Sheila Malcolmson, the MLA for Nanaimo and the Parliamentary secretary for the Environment has been assigned the task and as part of her work she has embarked on a tour of coastal communities this summer to learn more about the issue and hear what ideas residents may have towards the issue.

As part of her work she will make recommendations towards a provincial action plan, and in coordination with the Federal government look to eliminate the environmental threats caused by abandoned vessels.

To participate on line as part of her work, British Columbians can forward their comments and suggestions to MarineSpecialAdvisor@gov.bc.ca

Marine Protection engagement program 

The deadline for contributions towards her work is September 6th.

One organization which has been taking on the task of addressing the abandoned boat issue is the Dead Boats Disposal Society,

John Roe who is the leader of the Dead Boat Disposal Society highlighted the numbers for the province, observing that the Canadian Government has identified about 1,400 abandoned vessels along BC's Coast and he notes that he could probably add another 1,000 boats to that list.

“I can find four or five boats a day for the rest of my life, noting that in Ladysmith alone, there are about 60 sunken boats — some of them in water 180-feet deep. When you look at a single 25-foot fibreglass boat, the waste from that is equivalent to 480,000 straws being dumped into the ocean. We are making progress, but at the current rate it’s going to be 35 years before I get those 1,400 boats, and we’re seeing more showing up.”

You can learn more about the work of the Dead Boats Disposal Society from their Facebook page here.

Some background on how to report a Dead or Abandoned Boat to the Society can be found here.

Further background on the provincial government's plans to tackle the issue can be explored here.

For more items of interest on the work of the BC Legislature see our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

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