Despite municipalities and companies moving away from single-use plastics, CRD beaches can’t escape them.
The local chapter of the Surfrider Foundation is set to help Cadboro Bay beach get back to its old self.
“We’ve been doing monthly beach cleanups in the Victoria area for over 10 years. Beach cleanups are a great community activity to get people outside,” said Jillian Montgomery, Surfrider Vancouver Island chapter manager. “We do them to raise awareness about the types of plastic that wash up onto our shores or that are littered on the beaches that could potentially wash back into the ocean.”
For 10 years, every second Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1p.m. Surfrider Vancouver Island cleans up a southern Island beach. Montgomery said rural beaches tend to have more pollution wash in from the ocean, while urban beaches have more mess from fresh litter. There are exceptions, and Oak Bay is one of them.
“Usually what’s washing up are fragmented pieces of plastic,” Montgomery said. She noted a lot of what the team is finding are smaller pieces, or “nurdles,” and they have seen a huge increase in small plastic pellets.
For those who have not heard the term before, nurdles are the tiny lentil-sized pieces of plastic that mixes in with sand or pebbles.
“We’re all part of the problem and therefore we can all be part of the solution. I think when people come out and see what they find on a cleanup, we’re hoping that will inspire them to look at what they consume on a daily basis, so they can help reduce or eliminate what we’re finding on our beaches,” Montgomery said.
Surfrider will provide clean up material for those who would like to come and help out. Residents are welcome to come for a portion of the cleanup if they cannot attend the full two hours.
This weekend’s cleanup takes place at Cadboro Bay Beach on Sunday, Jan. 13, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.