Ontario funds project to capture plastic waste at 12 Great Lakes marinas

Plastic debris is seen on the shore of Lake Superior. Plastic debris is seen on the shore of Lake Superior. |  Photo: Jon Ellis/WDIO-TV, file

Updated: October 22, 2020 04:39 PM

Ontario is launching an initiative to collect plastic waste at a dozen marinas on the Great Lakes, though no sites on Lake Superior are part of the project.

The provincial government announced Thursday that is providing Pollution Probe, a non-profit group, with $375,000 to collect plastic waste using two types of devices. One device, called a Seabin, collects objects as small as microplastics from the water. The other device, Littatraps, collect litter inside storm drains before it enters waterways.

The devices will be installed at sites on Lake Huron, Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, and Lake St. Clair.

The province said an estimated 22 million pounds of plastic pollution end up in the Great Lakes every year. Plastic has made up more than 80% of the litter collected along Great Lakes shorelines during volunteer cleanups.

"Our government is committed to protecting our water resources and Great Lakes, and that includes tackling the millions of pounds of plastic pollution that enter our province's waterways each year," said Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, in a news release.

The agreement calls for Pollution Probe to analyze the types and amounts of waste collected and share the results publicly.

The initiative is part of the Great Lakes Plastic Cleanup.

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