There’s a big push in Canada at the moment to salvage and recycle dumped fishing gear.
Now this is not just a problem that is in Canada. Abandoned fishing gear is world wide. And there are other countries that have already started the practice of trying to clean up the mess that the fishing industry is leaving in our oceans.
What’s happened is that Steveston, B.C. has joined up with the Global Ghost Gear Initiative program and have begun to clean up their harbor. Massive bags of nylon mainly coming from discarded fishing nets, is being collected. This is then sent off to Europe where it is melted down for recycling into products like swimwear and carpets….a great variety.
Global Ghost Gear was launched last year with the purpose of trying to clean up the oceans. They were inspired by the Philippines where a similar program had already been in play with some good success.
Most of the discarded fishing material can’t be seen as it’s on the bottom of the ocean or floating well below the surface, but it is definitely a major hazard to ocean life. Nets, in particular, pose the greatest danger. And it is this area that Steveston is concentrating on.
Nearly 700 species of animals have been affected – either by ingesting or becoming entangled in marine debris as many divers will attest to. But you do have to applaud countries that have taken the initiative to recycle dumped fishing gear.
Most of this is caused by the commercial fishing industry, however, we as recreational anglers can make sure we are doing our bit, trying to retrieve lines , broken rods etc, when we can, and not dumping anything at all overboard.
Be a considerate fisherman … keeping the oceans clean is a way of protecting the future of our fishing.