West coast MLA calls for tsunami debris budget

Mountain of trash is headed for the west coast of Vancouver Island

Surfing could get tricky once the majority of Japanese tsunami debris hits the west coast.

There’s a mountain of trash headed towards Tofino and the MLA who represents the area wants something done about it.

However, said Alberni-Pacific Rim MLA Scott Fraser, he isn’t seeing much action, even as the first bits of plastic, wood and other Japanese tsunami debris begin to wash up on west coast beaches.

“The Liberal government’s preparation is woefully inadequate,” he said. “In other jurisdictions, such as Washington State, are way ahead of us. We don’t see a budget from the government for dealing with this debris. I have quite a bit of faith in the people of the west coast to try to address this themselves, but that’s not good enough. The province and the federal government have a responsibility to ensure the aftermath of that horrible disaster in Japan doesn’t become a disaster for west coast communities.”

Fraser called for a co-ordinated effort from Victoria and Ottawa to address the coming trashy tide and a budget to match.

“We need a budget that recognizes the reality of what’s coming and the cleanup that’s going to be required,” he said. “If this is indicative of how the province will handle an oil spill we should all be concerned. It’s lip service and platitudes only.”

In the meantime, he said, the federal government is actually decreasing the response capability on the coast.

“The federal government is trying to remove the physical presence of our Coast Guard operations in Ucluelet right now,” Fraser said. “This is appalling. They are also removing the marine pollution monitoring function of government — even while this raft of material from Japan is imminent. It’s on its way and I don’t think the government has done any proper planning on this and hasn’t shown any leadership at all.”

 

Just Posted

Parksville’s Arrowsmith Lodge and Cokely Manor celebrate 50 years

Week of ‘60s-themed activities starts on April 26

UPDATE: Missing kayakers located safe and sound in Welcome Bay

Pair were reported missing April 22, in vicinity of Lasqueti Island

Review: The Magic of ‘Almost, Maine’

ECHO Players production runs through May 5 at the Village Theatre in Qualicum Beach

Coombs farm auction returns April 28

CFI hosts 41st annual auction

What’s age got to do with it? B.C. couple with 45-year gap talks happy marriage

An Armstrong couple that has 45-year age gap began turning heads after being featured on show Extreme Love.

WATCH: South Vancouver Island shooting an ‘isolated and targeted’ incident, say police

One person in custody, another fled following shooting and crash on West Shore

Woe, Canada: Bruins down Maple Leafs 5-1 in Game 7

No Canadian teams left in Stanley Cup playoffs

Defence accuses officer of ‘incompetence’ in trial for B.C. man accused in daughters’ murder

Double murder trial for the Victoria father accused of killing his two young daughters continues

Should B.C. parents receive money if they make sure their kids are vaccinated?

New survey looks at public opinion around government’s role in forcing immunizations

B.C. men challenge constitutionality of Canada’s secret no-fly list

Parvkar Singh Dulai says he received a “denial of boarding” notification under the no-fly program last May 17

Murder on B.C. property didn’t need to be disclosed before sale, court rules

Buyer had tried to break contract after learning a man with ties to crime had been murdered there

B.C.’s largest Vaisakhi festival target of threatening Facebook post: Surrey RCMP

Police say they are investigating the posts on Facebook, after local MLA forwarded screenshots

Pug life: B.C. town boasts waggish list of dog names

Freedom-of-information request lists most ‘pupular’ dog names registered in White Rock

Most Read