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West Kootenay conservationists clean sweep the backcountry

Event organized by the Backcountry Hunters and Anglers of BC
Volunteers cleaning up College Creek area. Photo: Submitted

Submitted by Backcountry Hunters and Anglers of BC

A group of dedicated volunteers took to the local forestry roads the first weekend of May (Saturday, May 4) for a cleanup initiative aimed at preserving the natural beauty of the area.

Organized by the Backcountry Hunters and Anglers of BC along with the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program and Castlegar and District Wildlife Association, the event saw 22 participants of all ages donning gloves and wielding trash bags as they worked to rid the backcountry of litter and debris along North Beaver and College Creek Forest Service Roads outside of Castlegar.

The sites were identified with the help from the BC Conservation Service.

Volunteers cleaning up North Beaver Creek. Photo: Submitted

Armed with determination and a shared passion for conservation, the volunteers scoured the underbrush and forest edges collecting over 4,600 lbs of discarded waste from the two sites.

From plastic bottles and tires to demolition waste, the collected refuse painted a disappointing and sobering picture of the impact of irresponsible human activity on our local environment.

The cleanup effort not only fostered a sense of camaraderie among participants but also served as a reminder of the importance of community engagement in environmental conservation.

The truck loads of waste were eventually brought to the Ootischenia Landfill.

The volunteers would like to remind everyone that illegal dumping is totally unacceptable and can result in hefty fines.

If anyone observes illegal dumping they are encouraged to call the Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) hotline at 1-877-952-7277.

Waste can be responsibly dumped at your local landfill for low fees, especially for sorted waste. Some items, such as residential appliances, can be recycled for free.

The group thanks the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program and the Central Kootenay Regional District for their financial support of the event.

The volunteers anticipate organizing future clean-up initiatives in the West Kootenay, thereby inspiring more individuals to join their cause and make a positive impact on the surrounding backcountry.