British Colombia Clears Mystery Tyre IslandMore than 2,400 scrap tyres have been removed from remote island off B.C. coast
British Colombians saw yet another offshore clean-up of dumped tyres recently. This time from an island that had been a tyre dump for some 2,400 tyres from as far back as the 1990s.
Nobody is sure how they got to the island, but they were found by an environmental project looking for areas that needed cleaning up.
A 33-person team from the Ocean Legacy Foundation and Let’s Talk Trash, along with other volunteers, removed the offending tyres between Oct. 29 and 30 from the small island off the east coast of Nelson Island.
“We first caught wind of ‘Tire Island’ while out scouting for shoreline cleaning projects in early June of this year,” Abby McLennan, the Let’s Talk Trash team co-founder.
“We were just cruising along the coastline and sort of saw from afar this little island … it was just covered in black sort of stuff. As we got closer, the black stuff turned into mountains of tyres.”
The island falls on Crown land, and its use of a dump site appears to date back to the 1990s according to McLennan.
“You can actually see this entire island from the ferry that goes from Earl’s Cove to Saltery Bay … it’s the problem with many sites that are similar in nature to this that it’s outside of everyone’s jurisdiction to clean it up.”
All of the abandoned tyres were removed by hand due to the lack of beach or landing area.
According to a news release, the cleanup was part of the Clean Coast, Clean Waters Initiative, which supports marine shoreline cleanup and derelict vessel removal in B.C.’s coastal communities. The project is funded by the B.C. Ministry of Environment.
The removal was also conducted in partnership with Tire Stewardship BC and Liberty Tire.
The environmental organisations said the tyres were loaded up onto a barge and taken to Powell River, where they were loaded by hand again into eight, 30-yard bins and a trailer. From there, the tyres were taken to Liberty Tire’s recycling facility in Delta, B.C.
Source: Global News