A barge hauls a load of debris pulled from Tod Inlet last Thursday.

Waterway cleanup an effort in jurisdictional co-operation

Coast guard, all levels of government and Tsartlip First Nation work together to clean Tod Inlet

More than three tons of metal are in the recycling heap after a massive cleanup of Tod Inlet last week, Feb. 14 to 17.

For the second time in six months, multiple agencies over multiple government jurisdictions came together to clean up the waterway.

“The exercise has been positive because a lot of stuff that was out there that shouldn’t be, is out, but as well it’s set us on a good course for the future,” said Central Saanich Coun. Adam Olsen

The Canadian Coast Guard, Transport Canada, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources, the District of Central Saanich and the Tsartlip First Nation removed and recycled metal, batteries, tires and paints during the three-day cleanup.

District of Central Saanich staff were on hand Monday to remove a containment boom and do final cleanup. More than 30 dump truck loads of garbage weighing more than 60,000 kilograms went to the landfill in the follow up to cleanup work done in September.

“Transport Canada came in the fall and removed some marine buoys that didn’t meet the Transport Canada regulations,” Olsen said.

A half dozen boats were also deemed environmentally dangerous or abandoned and removed during the fall work.

The second phase of the cleanup included an accumulation of unsafe material and abandoned vessels near the mouth of Tod Inlet and creeping into Gowlland Tod Provincial Park.

“It only works if all levels of government that have authority and jurisdiction work together, otherwise everybody stands around looking at each other saying, ‘Who’s going to do it first?’” Olsen said.