Some innovative new aquatic receptacles are literally taking out the trash in the waters of False Creek.
Three trash skimmers, called Seabins, are being placed around Granville Island as a pilot project. They will capture floating refuse and raise awareness about plastic pollution.
The Seabins are designed to capture litter before it travels further into the ocean and enters the food chain. There are plans to install a total of 12 bins in Vancouver waterways over the next three years.
The bins skim the water surface using an electric pump that operates 24 hours a day. Water is sucked in from the surface and passes through a catch bag inside the Seabin. The water is then pumped back into the marina, leaving litter trapped in the bag.
One Seabin can catch an estimated 3.9 kilograms of floating debris per day or 1.4 tons a year. That's about the same weight as the average car.
The initiative was organized by a coalition led by Swim Drink Fish Canada.
According to the national environmental charity, 25,000 microplastics were counted in False Creek in a single reading in 2017. Microplastics are tiny pieces of plastic that can be consumed by various marine life. Roughly 30 billion are released into local waters every year by water treatment plants.