Douglas lends a hand at annual shoreline cleanup
By Angela Espinoza, News Editor
On September 21, the 2014 South Dyke Road Shoreline Cleanup in New Westminster, teaming up with RiverFest New West, saw over 100 people come out and help clean up the shoreline area. The shoreline cleanup has been taking place annually since 2011 and is headed by the New Westminster Environmental Partners (NWEP).
Douglas College graduate and University of British Columbia student Jaycee Clarkson, who’s worked for Douglas’ UNIBUG Project, helped with the cleanup once again. “I was able to help out as a site leader,” said Clarkson. “This year we integrated a bunch of different things … we didn’t just pick up trash, we also pulled invasive species, and new this year is we planted native shrubs and trees.”
The goal of the cleanup each year is to remove organic and inorganic waste from the area. Organic waste refers partially to invasive plant species that can be potentially damaging to the specific environment. Clarkson stated volunteers spent at least four hours removing invasive plants and planting new, friendlier plants.
“One thing that was really neat this year was seeing at the end all the plants we had pulled out … and then getting to actually plant the new plants. It was really a visual impact and that was rewarding for me and all the people on my team.”
This year’s shoreline cleanup received funding from Vancity and the City of New Westminster, and the latter also provided collection services for the organic waste. Clarkson noted the increased number of Douglas students who helped with the cleanup, and encouraged future student participation.
“It was really great for NWEP members, as well as community members to come and put their passion into a project and get those tangible results.”