Andrew Bailey Photo Pacific Rim National Park staff cleared a shipping container that was up on Long Beach next to Incinerator Rock in November. A total of 35 styrofoam insulated containers are believed to have spilled off a cargo ship on Nov. 3, 2016.

Johns asks govt to fund Hanjin cleanup

Courtenay-Alberni MP Gord Johns demanded the Liberal government “get to work” and provide federal funding for the cleanup of the Hanjin coastline debris field between Tofino and Ucluelet on the west coast of Vancouver Island.

Johns raised this issue during Question Period in Parliament, Sept. 6.

“Last week, the government announced on Twitter that it signed on to the UN CleanSeas initiative, but today it is obvious that there is no funding and no plan to meet our obligations,” Johns said. “Unfortunately, Tweets and selfies will not clean our coastlines.”

Johns indicated that volunteers in his Courtenay-Alberni riding are now in their 10th month of cleaning up the largest marine debris spill in decades on the Island’s west coast.

“Yet there has been zero funding for this cleanup from the Liberal government; just delays, excuses, and rhetoric,” Johns pointed out,. “When will the government finally get to work and fund the cleanup of the Hanjin debris field?”

The Liberal government’s response to Johns question left the MP unimpressed.

“The Transport Minister just stood up and promoted a program that will not even come into force until next year, and may not even cover events like this” Johns said. “This is a serious problem that requires immediate action.”

The Hanjin debris field was caused when 35 large containers were spilled by an international cargo ship in the Pacific Ocean last November.

Parks Canada recovered $76,600 from the estate of the now-bankrupt Hanjin Shipping Company, and initially agreed to fund the removal of debris collected by community volunteers on non-Crown beaches. But it no longer has sufficient resources to complete the job.

To date, no federal funds have been utilized in the cleanup effort, and the debris gathered by local groups, such as Surfrider, remains in bags along the coastline awaiting removal.

— NEWS Staff

Just Posted

Smoking ban arrives on BC Ferries

No crackdown, just education as BC Ferries enacts smoking ban

UPDATE: Whiskey Creek floodwaters subside

Area roads reopened following Sunday morning closure

Parksville water project seeks new manager

City operations manager moves to new job with RDN

Man receives four-year sentence for stabbing Good Samaritan near Qualicum Beach

Jeffrey Brian MacDonald sentenced to additional 242 days in jail

SOGI rally disrupts school board meeting, but business carries on

Chilliwack school board makes statement in support of B.C.-wide gender identity teaching resource

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

Tofino and Ucluelet wowed by biggest waves in a decade

“Even in pictures you show the kids and that, unless you’re witnessing it live, it’s like no other.”

Police fear fewer fentanyl imports don’t signal the end of the overdose crisis

RCMP say it’s just as likely that criminal are getting more clever

UPDATE: Two people die in ATV accident south of Campbell River

Third person survived attempt to cross a creek

Coal dust escaping rail cars spurs B.C. petition

Local governments are on board with Shuswap resident’s request for better control of escaping particulate

Lawyers slam ‘de facto expulsion’ of student guilty of sexual interference

Calgary student guilty of sexual assault of a minor allowed to finish semester

B.C. NDP set to restructure union bargaining

School trustees to regain control over employer group

UPDATE: Police continue to seek missing Qualicum Beach woman

Oceanside RCMP requesting public assistance in locating Carmel Georgina Gilmour

New development in missing plane near Revelstoke

The family of Ashley Bourgeault believe they have found a new clue

Most Read