World Oceans Day roadside, shoreline clean up in Dublin Shore nets bags of trash


  • <p>SUBMITTED PHOTO</p><p>A participant of the World Oceans Day clean up in Dublin Shore in early June.</p>

DUBLIN SHORE - Participants of a World Oceans Day clean up in this Lunenburg County community bagged various pieces of construction-related debris along the roadside and shorelines but it was old fishing lines and similar marine material that made for most of the garbage gathered.

A group of nine marked the international day, on June 8, scattering around the Bells Cove Road area, wearing gloves, carrying trash bags and pick-up tools in an effort to make the landscape more pristine.

A local sea kayaking and paddle board business and the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg partnered in the morning event. Gavin Cameron of Cape LaHave Adventures said the garbage capture lasted about an hour on the rainy day.

While the number of participants wasn't large, the amount of rubbish scraped from the environment was. Cameron said there was enough to fill four large bags and extracting one stubborn piece of abandoned fishing line proved to be a challenge. A degrading 20-metre-long double-braided line twisted in the sand was the biggest item removed from the beach.

"We just crossed the shoreline and picked up whatever we could find," Cameron said. "It included that big, sticky, gross line. There's usually one item that's hard to get."

The concept of World Oceans Day is considered a time to underline the importance of protection of marine species and ecosystems, in addition to it being a time to celebrate the beauty of oceans all over.

For those unable to attend, Cape LaHave Adventures encouraged the public to go to their own local oceanfronts and clean up any garbage found.

"I think it's important, any day," Cameron said.

He said the risk of harm to marine life can't be minimized. "We go out here and paddle every day and I always try to pick up trash here and there. It's always nice to do as much as we can as a big group and it feels pretty good."

Fisheries and Oceans Canada estimates discarded, lost or abandoned fishing gear, such as nets, lines, rope, traps, pots, and floats, is responsible for most of the macro-plastics in the world's oceans by weight and has a direct impact on harvestable fish stocks and marine ecosystems.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that so-called ghost gear represents about 10 per cent of marine debris by volume.

Cameron said it's gratifying to do some part to improve the environment.

"It's such a beautiful area and we get to enjoy it," he noted. "It deserves to be respected and clean."

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