What the Float!

A large section of a commercial dock washed up on Piggott Bay beach in the Spring of 2017.  The float was composed of huge blocks of styrofoam encased in thick concrete laced with rebar. This would be a tough nut to crack! The stryofoam was starting to break apart, scattering all over the beach, and ending up in our marine food webs. Unfortunately, this is an increasingly common occurrence in the Gulf Islands, and there is no government body that has effectively taken responsibility for cleanups or prevention. This leaves communities like Mayne Island on their own to find solutions.

the float

The float.

Community Response – Faster than a speeding bureaucracy

A team of community leaders from the Mayne Island Conservancy and Mayne Recycling Society got together and came up with a plan to demolish and remove the float. Thanks to the grass-roots nature of the meeting, things moved quickly. The conversations was brief:

“Who’s got a sledge hammer?”


“What day should we tackle the demolition”

OK, let’s do it!

Rather than endless debate about responsibility, a plan was decided upon within 20 minutes of meeting, and off we went.

On July 24th, 2017, a group of about 14 community members aged 12 – 79, wielding sledge hammers, chainsaws, and plastic bags demolished the dock section and loaded it onto the Recycling Truck.


A few short hours work in the hot sun and the work was done (other than Grant’s long trip to the dump in Saanich of course…).

A huge thanks to everyone who volunteered their time to do some heavy lifting or lend us tools! Thanks also to the CRD for covering the disposal and transportation cost.

You Can Get Involved

Every April, the Mayne Conservancy and Recycling Society team up to coordinate an island-wide volunteer Beach Cleanup. We hope you’ll join us in the Spring of 2018!

Float Demolition

The work is done… for now.


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