Tofino Clean Up Project

Do you know what lies beneath the docks you walk on? The Emerald Sea team sure does!


We had an absolute blast cleaning below the 1st Street dock in Tofino this past Saturday, March 23rd in a collaborative cleanup effort with Surfrider Pacific Rim and the Ucluelet Aquarium. 

Divers Bourton, Gabe, Ally and Patrick were under the water collecting crab traps, oyster crates, shopping carts, tires, and more, while Gideon was at the surface using the ROV to find hot spots of debris (and entertain the kids).

Loads of volunteers were on hand to pull the debris to the surface. As each item was brought onto the dock, biologists from the Ucluelet Aquarium carefully removed any attached marine species and returned them safely to the sea. 

Finally, Surfrider volunteers sorted and recycled all the materials that had been collected from underneath the dock. A total of 1,294 kg of material was removed - and only 13 kg was sent to landfill, the rest was recycled!

Photo credit: Clover Fedoriuk-Russell

So – what exactly did we find under the dock? 

  • 20 shopping carts

  • 19 tires

  • 3 super sacs of styrofoam

  • 1/2 super sac of glass bottles

  • 3/4 super sac of rope

  • 1 1/2 super sac of plastic 

  • 12 buoys

  • 5 oyster crates

  • 3 crab traps

  • 1 large ball of cable

  • 1 large net

Over 300 marine creatures were removed from these items and returned to the sea (hopefully to more natural habitats!). 

We had an incredible day and it wouldn’t have been possible without the collaboration of such dedicated and hardworking people. We look forward to the next opportunity to work with these wonderful people dedicated to restoring and protecting marine ecosystems!