San Josef Bay to Lowrie Bay
In 2021, David travelled by paddleboard from San Josef Bay to Lowrie Bay on the west coast of Vancouver Island where he collected more than one tonne (about 1,000 kilograms) of garbage that was 80 per cent fishing debris and 20 per cent from the tsunami.
David dug nets deeply buried in sand, and wrapped and wedged in logs and rocks. He retrieved massive amounts of Styrofoam and other flotsam that was blocked by log jams up to 15 feet high. After 16 days, he was joined by crew from Living Oceans. The debris was bagged and then flown out by West Coast Helicopters to a drop zone where it was sorted again and picked up by a truck and taken to a recycling or landfill facility for the last stage of sorting the garbage from the recyclables.
Port Hardy to Tofino
In 2020, David paddled from Port Hardy to Tofino on Vancouver Island, approximately 500 kms of paddling, cleaning shorelines as he went. The trip took 79 days and covered 1200 kms of shoreline. The debris was placed above storm tide lines for future pickup and removal.
David took very little food with him and supplemented his diet by fishing and foraging. He enjoyed many different types of berries and mushrooms and other plants such as black lily, clover, plantain and kelp. While he relies on books and field research to improve his knowledge, much of what he has learnt has been taught by local Indigenous groups who have of course acquired their knowledge over thousands of years.
In 2022, David plans to begin his paddleboard journey at the San Josef River and gather debris in the Lowrie Bay, Cape Scott and Palmerston areas on northern Vancouver Island.
For roughly three weeks, he’ll work the coastline piling debris and mapping the waypoints and later in the month he will be joined by the Living Oceans team and together they’ll bag the debris ready for removal by helicopter in early September.
David expects this year’s debris will include the usual fishing and tsunami debris, but also garbage from the content of the Zim Kingston’s 109 containers that washed overboard in October 2021. This could include large items such as appliances, smaller items like yoga mats and Christmas decorations as well as large quantities of packing foam. Removing this debris before it is broken into millions of tiny pieces is important as the smaller the pieces the more likely it is to harm fish and wildlife.
Stay tuned for more details. Contact us if you would like more information.