Vancouver beaches cleared of tons of debris from 2011 earthquake.
Work began Tuesday to clear dozens of beaches on the west coast of Vancouver Island of debris and plastics, much of it washed ashore from the 2011 tsunami that swept Japan.
Using a helicopter, a barge and a tug, volunteers are picking up cached bundles of garbage from one end of the island to the other.
For months, hundreds of volunteers from seven groups have combed beaches by foot and by boat between Cape Scott in the north and Sooke in the south.
They bagged a staggering array of plastic junk and stashed them above the tide line for later removal.
Now, with the last bits of money provided by the Japanese government for a multi-year tsunami debris cleanup program, members of the Vancouver Island Marine Debris Working Group hired the tug Westco Rouge out of Campbell River to pick up the junk and take it to Richmond for recycling.