Courtenay-Alberni MP Gord Johns calls on government to “act locally” on ocean plastics

  • Jan. 25, 2018 3:30 p.m.

Courtenay-Alberni Member of Parliament Gord Johns this week called on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to act locally in regards to ocean plastics.

While the federal government announced yesterday that it will ask all G7 nations to sign a “no plastics” pledge to save the world’s oceans, Johns said this government has still not helped with clean-up efforts on Vancouver Island.

“While it is gratifying that the Prime Minister seems to be answering the call of so many environmental groups and advocates to address this crisis internationally, the job has yet to be done on our own Canadian beaches and coastal waters,” he said.

“The government’s so-called world-class Ocean Protection Plan does not mention plastics at all and, in particular, makes no mention of the response required when marine debris are spilled into the ocean and wash up on our precious coasts”.

On the first anniversary of the Hanjin Seattle cargo ship spill — an accident that created a massive debris field along the west coast of Vancouver Island — Johns tabled a motion (M-151) that called on the government to combat plastic pollution in aquatic environments. The motion included the ask for a dedicated annual fund to help local first responders restore the environment.

Johns has repeatedly brought the issue to the House of Commons, rising over 20 times since being elected in 2015 to demand government action on ocean plastics and other marine debris. In addition, he has sponsored a petition that has been signed by hundreds of coastal residents on this issue.

“A pledge by G7 nations is all well and good but the reality is that when large spills like Hanjin occur, the Liberal government expects local citizens living on our coasts and remote First Nations to respond without the support they need to ensure that the job can be done efficiently and with a minimum of risk,” said Johns. “Yes it is time to think globally, but we must first act locally on this critical issue.”

Local community groups have cleaned up the beaches without any adequate help from the current government, says Johns. Government officials have admitted there is a near complete legislative and regulatory void for marine debris cleanup and there is no dedicated fund available to support response efforts.

Just Posted

Review: Show about the show delights at Qualicum Beach premiere

A combination of hilarity and tender moments for Second Chances musical

Concern over vaping grows in Parksville Qualicum Beach schools

Health officer says parents have ample reason to be concerned

Coombs Family Day Celebration cancelled

The large snowfall that hit Vancouver Island recently has led to the… Continue reading

Parksville Qualicum Beach residents advised to prepare for changing weather

Rising temperatures on Friday will produce snow, changing to rain with increasing snow melt

VIDEO: The Art of Surfboard Making

Hand-made, handpainted surfboard by Parksville couple

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

B.C. couple attacked with acid, slashed with knife in Vietnam

Warning, graphic images: Man has burns on 80 per cent of his body, slashed with knife

Northern B.C. First Nation clan says ancient tools found at pipeline work site

Archeologists from the Smithsonian Institute estimate one of the stones found dates back up to 3500 years

Names keep adding to vaccine petition started by B.C. mom

Maple Ridge mom started campaign to make vaccination a condition of attending school

Wilson-Raybould resignation stokes anger, frustration within veterans community

Liberals have had three veterans-affairs ministers — Kent Hehr, Seamus O’Regan and Wilson-Raybould

Most Read