October 8, 2007

Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup draws record number of participants

VANCOUVER, BC-A motorcycle, a laptop computer, a hammock and a set of costume fairy wings, plus some 18,500 cigarette butts were among the items collected during the third week of September as the Vancouver Aquarium and the TD Bank Financial Group held their annual Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup. The cleanup, now in its 14th year, drew its highest-ever number of participants, with more than 50,000 volunteers signing up across Canada. From September 15-23, more than 1,200 shorelines from Nunavut to Tofino to St John's were cleared of harmful litter. In Yellowknife, for example, participants braved a snowfall to clean up the Frame Lake shoreline, removing 12 bags of garbage including a coffee mug, a bicycle, a giant teddy bear and numerous bottles of hairspray. Cleanup participants in Toronto removed 346 kg of litter from Woodbine beach, including 630 food wrappers. Participants at Kits Beach in Vancouver collected 224 kg of litter, including 18,500 cigarette butts collected in just three hours, while Halifax participants eliminated 27 kg of garbage for their shoreline. Final figures for all 1,200 shoreline cleanups will continue to come in throughout the next two months. Updated information can be found on the program's Web site, www.vanaqua.org/cleanup.

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