A Canadian Non-Profit, Ocean Legacy Foundation, is opening a plastic depot in British Columbia.

This facility will clean and sort ocean debris, including fishing gear, buoys, plastics like styrofoam, and more. Once sorted, recyclable materials will be processed. This facility is the fifth such processing centre in the province.

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Ocean Legacy Foundation (“Ocean Legacy”), a Canadian non-profit organization that develops and implements worldwide plastic pollution response programs with the goal to end ocean plastic pollution, today announced that in partnership with the Sunshine Coast Regional District (“SCRD”), they will be opening a new Ocean Plastic Depot on April 28, 2023, at the Sechelt Landfill, located at 4901 Dusty Rd., Sechelt. This ocean plastic diversion program is made possible through funding from the Ghost Gear Fund and Department of Fisheries and Oceans. The Sechelt Ocean Plastic Depot will accept materials from shoreline cleanup efforts by the local community, providing essential infrastructure to divert these plastic resources from landfills and reduce ocean pollution.!

“Ocean Legacy is excited to launch another ocean plastic collection depot in British Columbia. This new depot provides an easy and free location for community members to drop off marine plastic debris, and help reduce the pollution in our coastal communities,” said Chloé Dubois, Executive Director, Ocean Legacy Foundation. “Ocean Legacy Foundation continues to look for opportunities to move towards circularity in the waste sector and divert wasted plastics from landfills. This new depot directly addresses this issue.”

“We welcome the opportunity to partner with Ocean Legacy to ensure that materials destined for our landfill can instead be utilized as a resource elsewhere,” said Corrina Suveges, Superintendent of Solid Waste Operations, Sunshine Coast Regional District. “Any opportunity to reorganize waste materials into a circular economy needs to be harnessed to bring us closer to a more sustainable way of living.”

“It is estimated that the Sechelt Ocean Plastic Depot will be at full capacity by 2025; however, there is hope that this new ocean plastic depot can assist in prolonging the landfill’s intake capabilities,” said Dubois.

The new depot is able to accept materials such as abandoned, lost, discarded fishing gear (“ALDFG”), marine debris, and equipment including netting and rope, polystyrene foam (styrofoam), hard plastic and select buoys. Material collected at the depot is consolidated and then sent to the Ocean Legacy processing centre at Steveston Harbour, BC, where it is further sorted, cleaned, and recycled. 

“Currently on the Sunshine Coast, there are no options for recycling ocean plastics and dock foam,” says Marc Sole, Manager of Solid Waste Services, Sunshine Coast Regional District. “SCRD staff have been pursuing options to recycle ocean plastics and marine debris materials in order to help decrease the amount of plastic washing up on beaches, reduce our carbon footprint, and, importantly, maximize our remaining air space at the landfill”.

The Sechelt Ocean Plastic Depot will be the fifth depot of its kind in British Columbia, with others located in Powell River, Ucluelet, Cumberland, 7 Mile, and developments underway in Port Edward. The program forms part of Ocean Legacy Foundation’s national strategy in addressing plastic pollution by creating end of life solutions for ALDGF and marine plastics while developing the plastic circular economy.

Waste360, May 1, 2023.

Read the full and original press release at waste360.com.