Okanagan Forest Task Force reports increase in illegal dumping

Illegal dumping spikes

The Okanagan Forest Task Force says there has been a surge in illegal dumping along backcountry roads during the pandemic.

"Illegal dumping is on the rise at the moment and growing fast," says Kane Blake of the Okanagan Forest Task Force. 

Blake attributes some of the new dumpsites to more people spring cleaning during the pandemic and hiring non-reputable haulers.

"We have been doing more yard work recently and spent about 35 minutes in the [landfill] line up just last week," adds Blake.

"A simple Facebook search shows lots of people looking to hire people for dump runs, but the real question is how much of it is actually making it to the landfill."

Blake advises people to keep the names and conversations of someone you hire to take your stuff to the landfill, as well as proof of payment. This way if your information is found in a dumpsite you can possibly help to prove who dumped it. 

"We need to start holding people accountable and not let them think this is OK to do." 

The group is hoping to resume clean ups even if they are just small ones "I just hate to see our beautiful forests turning into landfills from ignorant people being too lazy to go to the landfill," says Blake. 

The task force will continue to travel the back roads and document all the spots they find. Photos of recent trips along backroads can be found on the group's website and Facebook group.

A trashed RV was also discovered with week in James Lake reservoir east of Kelowna. BC Conservation officers have also reported an increase in illegal dumping during the pandemic. 

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