New Marinas Joining the GLPC!
Today, the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup is pleased to announce that the following marinas will be joining the initiative and supporting the capture of plastic debris and other materials throughout the Great Lakes Basin:
• Desmasdon’s Boat Works, Pointe au Baril
• Beacon Marine, Pointe au Baril
• Town of Collingwood, Collingwood
• Lefroy Harbour, Lefroy
The Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup launched on August 27, 2020 with Seabin and LittaTrap™ capture and cleanup devices installed in 11 marinas thanks to support from Environment and Climate Change Canada. Last week, the initiative welcomed a further 10 marinas thanks to support from the Government of Ontario. The addition of these 4 marinas, who bring their own technologies to the network, expands the scope and impact with more data being collected for research on the sources and pathways of plastic pollution in the Great Lakes Basin. It will also bring new audiences into discussions on plastic pollution, including the importance of recycling and proper resource management.
Marinas across the Great Lakes have long been champions of environmental stewardship, making valuable contributions to the protection and management of our waterways. Marinas like Desmasdon’s, Beacon Marine, Collingwood and Lefroy Harbour have already demonstrated their commitment to tackling the plastic pollution problem by investing in capture and cleanup devices for their sites to get plastic out of the water. By joining the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup, these marinas can have an even greater impact by contributing to the valuable research that the initiative is generating through analysis of recovered debris.
Plastic pollution is a major concern in the Great Lakes Basin, the largest freshwater system in the world. Beyond visible litter, microplastics, many of which are no larger than the width of a human hair, are present throughout the lakes. In some parts of the lakes, there is more plastic per square kilometer than there is in the ocean garbage patches. The impacts of all of this plastic are far-reaching. A key goal of the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup is to learn more about the sources of plastic and how it impacts our natural systems.
“Having these four marinas and their Seabins join the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup means we are getting more plastic out of the Great Lakes and more critical data to support plastic pollution research,” said Christopher Hilkene, CEO, Pollution Probe. “Their involvement will help us to better understand Great Lakes plastic pollution, raise awareness in their communities and empower more people to take action.”
“The Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup initiative, launched this summer, is one of the most ambitious plastics capture, cleanup, and research projects underway in the Great Lakes,” said Mark Fisher, President and CEO, Council of the Great Lakes Region. “By adding these marinas and their Seabin devices to the initiative, we’ll be able to learn even more about plastic pollution throughout the Great Lakes watershed in Ontario while educating coastal communities about the importance of recycling and the impacts of litter on our environment.”
“Beacon Marine and Desmasdon's Boat Works are located on Georgian Bay, a very unique UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. We take great pride in our commitment to the environment and the preservation of the Bay. We are continually working to protect the water, the ecosystems, and the species that are contained within. When we discovered the Seabins late last fall we were set on bringing them to both of our marine locations to help remove litter and micro plastics from the water. At the time we were unaware of the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup Project but when GBF asked us to join the project this summer we could not wait to be a part of it! This initiative is very important to us and will provide important analytical information from the items we catch in our Seabins. Georgian Bay holds a special place in our hearts and we are committed to its preservation so it can be enjoyed by future generations!” said Matt French and Meghan Pepler.
“The Town of Collingwood, in partnership with Georgian Bay Forever, is excited to join our plastic pollution solution efforts with the GLPC project. Council is keenly interested in critical environmental issues, like microplastic infiltration of aquatic habitats and our source water. As a waterfront community that is so connected to this vital feature, it is imperative that all residents and visitors are aware of these issues and are educated about how to care for this critical resource. The addition of Seabins, and other elements of this project, will add to upcoming educational campaigns and help teach our stakeholders how to protect our water,” said Brian Saunderson, Mayor of the Town of Collingwood, Collingwood, Ontario.
About the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup
The Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup, founded by Boating Ontario, the Council of the Great Lakes Region, Pollution Probe, PortsToronto and the U of T Trash Team, thanks to funding from government and corporate partners, is a first-of-its-kind initiative using innovative Seabin and LittaTrap technology to quickly capture and remove plastics and other litter at marinas from Lake Ontario to Lake Superior and everywhere in between. Through research, outreach and education, and collaboration with organizations like Georgian Bay Forever, the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup will work to identify sources of litter entering our waterways and how government, industry, and consumers can work together to reduce, reuse and recycle material waste.
Melissa De Young
Director, Policy & Programs
President and CEO, Council of the Great Lakes Region