Each winter, Átl’ka7tsem/Howe Sound is hit with massive windstorms that can knock over trees and structures, tear docks apart, and thrash vessels around – leaving marine debris in its wake. The Marine Stewardship Initiative is currently collecting information about marine debris in Átl’ka7tsem/Howe Sound. Collecting marine debris information in Átl’ka7tsem is no easy mission, but was a challenge that MSI in partnership with Ocean Bridge Direct Action (an Ocean Wise initiative) was game to carry out to update the 2019 marine debris data layer. Our Marine Debris Coordinator, Eleana Block, has created a marine debris reporting system to utilize citizen science to collect this information.

Vessels cast ashore in Lions Bay by one of the many winter windstorms in 2019. Photo credit: Future of Howe Sound Society

As the first step in the reporting process, we have created a Google Form that can be filled out when marine debris has been observed in the Sound. If marine debris is observed in the Sound the form can be filled out through the link provided (https://forms.gle/277YwSEG8bc1KHoM7). The form asks for the coordinates and information about the marine debris found. Filling out the Google Form helps us collect geographic information from marine debris observations. This reported information is being displayed on MSI’s Marine Reference Guide and helps us and community members in and around Átl’ka7tsem better visualize the marine debris reported. The mapped data will be analyzed to help identify areas in need of cleanup and develop best management practices for decision-makers in Átl’ḵa7tsem/Howe Sound.

Access To Form

You can access the form by clicking the button above, scanning the QR code, or through the link in our Instagram bio. If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to marinedebriscoordinator@gmail.com!

 

The Reporting Process:

When marine debris is observed in the Sound….

Step 1: Click the link to access the form.

Step 2: Begin filling out the form.

Step 3: Find your current coordinates. This can be done on your phone through the compass app or by dropping a pin in the map app. 

Step 4: Report your current coordinates in the form, separated into the latitude and longitude. The coordinates should be in the Decimal Degree system.

Step 5: Complete and submit the form.

Step 6: If you take a photo, send it to us at marinedebriscoordinator@gmail.com.

 

If you are interested, you can go to the Marine Reference Guide and to the marine debris layer to see other reported sightings here.

 

Thank you to everyone who is supporting this initiative and taking the time to report their observations!