To the Editor,
Re: Derelict vessels bill floated in Parliament, Feb. 5.
Elected officials at the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities Convention will vote next month on Saanich council’s resolution that aims to address the safety and environmental risks posed by our aging recreational and commercial vessel fleet.
It is a feasible and vital measure that will protect our waterways from derelict and abandoned vessels.
The resolution proposes the creation of an Abandoned and Derelict Vessels Program, and a Vessel End of Life Disposal Program, with funding through vessel purchase, registration, insurance and moorage to support local municipalities and waterfront property owners.
We need only to look to our neighbours in Washington and Oregon for proof that a proactive approach works, and can save taxpayer money.
Let’s support a solution to these problem vessels that risk contaminating our marine environment and are a safety hazard to boaters and waterfront dwellers.
By working with vessel owners and enabling appropriate agencies, we may be able to finally tackle this issue that has threatened our coast for far too long.
Christianne Wilhelmsonexecutive directorGeorgia Strait Alliance