On the Saturday before Earth Day a beach clean up was held on Pender Island. Volunteers took to the beaches clad in rubber gloves with garbage bags in hand, to tidy up the debris that had been swept on to the beaches all winter long.
The first beach we cleaned had hardly any garbage. It is a beach that is very rocky and hard to access except at very low tides. The picture above was taken a couple of hours before a “very low tide” where we could just get down on the “beach”.
We then moved on to another neighbourhood beach, Peter Cove North, as the kids were keen to do more beach clean up. Here we found a bit of garbage, mostly the type that had been washed up throughout the winter.
We still had a bit of time left before the garbage drop off time so we moved on to Starvation Bay. This is where we found a lot of garbage.
Sadly this wasn’t the “washed in by the tide” type of debris, but rather the “dropped by thoughtless people” type of garbage. Clearly some people who frequent this beach were never taught to “leave only footprints”. It seemed that the worst garbage was in areas with oceanfront properties. Pretty sad, and a pretty good argument against waterfront development (but I will leave that little soap-box speech for another day!).
Just when we were totally unimpressed with humans leaving garbage behind things got worse. We started finding styrofoam scattered across the beach. A lot of styrofoam. Little pieces, big pieces, all the way down the beach…….
We finished the clean up, dropped off the garbage, and headed to the community centre for the volunteer lunch which happened to be the best chili EVER.
I hope we will be on the island for next year’s clean up.