Japan earthquake/tsunami garbage
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Thread: Japan earthquake/tsunami garbage

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    Posting Addict ClairesMommy's Avatar
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    Default Japan earthquake/tsunami garbage

    Debris from Japan's earthquake and tsunami is now littering the beach of Haida Gwaii, raising concerns about who is going to clean up the tonnes of garbage expected to wash ashore on the West Coast.
    In recent month some of the first debris that drifted across the Pacific has been intriguing, including a container with a Harley Davidson motorcycle, some volleyballs that have been traced back to their owners, and even an unmanned fishing vessel that was sunk by the U.S. coast guard.

    But now local residents like commercial fisherman Bruce Stuart-Burton say there is more and more junk arriving and it is making a mess.

    "It is just beginning and if they leave it alone you won't even be able to see the logs on the beach. It will be so covered in plastic and foam and debris and general garbage from the tsunami, you wouldn't even be able to walk on the logs."

    B.C. Parks has told people not to pick it up, but Stuart-Burton says he's already been salvaging some of the usable fishing gear.

    "I filled the back of my truck up. I picked up 30 buoys that were of pretty decent quality, but there was like hundreds of buoys that are cracked, broken ? things that I couldn't use."
    No clean-up plan in place

    Joan Merrick, the Chief Administrative Officer for the Skeena-Queen Charlotte Regional District, says the local government is trying to figure out how to clean up the mess and who'll pay for it.


    Locals say that they have seen more debris coming ashore lately with what looks to be Japanese writing on it and could be related to the Japanese tsunami.



    "So I mean if we're talking large volumes of debris it could quickly fill the first, the current, phase of the landfill, and there's a cost to the public to do closure on that. There is a cost, we're not sure what that cost is going to be because we don't really have any idea of volumes and there's all sorts of unknowns."

    Scientists at the University of Hawaii say a field of about 18 million tonnes of debris is slowly being carried by ocean currents toward North America. The field is estimated to be about 3,200 kilometres long and 1,600 kilometres wide.

    The Kuroshio ocean current runs in an almost direct path from Japan's east coast over to North America, passing right by the islands of Haida Gwaii, about 750 kilometres northwest of Vancouver.
    The March 11, 2011, tsunami was generated after a magnitude 9.0 earthquake struck off the coast of northern Japan.

    The huge waves and swells of the tsunami moved inland and then retreated back into the Pacific Ocean, carrying with them the wreckage of buildings, cars and boats. Nearly 19,000 people were killed.
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/britis...s-salvage.html

    Who should pay? Japan, Canada, the US (I'm pretty sure a fair bit of debris is washing up on the Pacific NW states too. 18 million metric tonnes of debris is a lot of garbage.

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    What a tough call. Not like Japan did this on purpose. It would be nice if all countries got together to help each other out with the clean up. To me, on a smaller scale, if someone's piece of trash ends up on my front lawn I'll get rid of it. If my neighbor's entire trash pick up blows over in the wind and ends up on my lawn I would hope they would help to pick up. Does that make sense?
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    If it is going to be as bad as they anticipate, then I hope everyone works together to deal with the mess.

    I don't get why they are telling individuals not to touch it. If there is something useable why not put it to good use?

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    It is a natural disaster. It should be dealt with the same as any other natural disaster. Japan isn't responsible for it, it will just have to be dealt with whereever it lands by whatever country it lands on. If there is a tornado and my house lands on the neighbors land, they don't go to the person that the house belonged to and tell them to clean it up.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GloriaInTX View Post
    It is a natural disaster. It should be dealt with the same as any other natural disaster. Japan isn't responsible for it, it will just have to be dealt with whereever it lands by whatever country it lands on. If there is a tornado and my house lands on the neighbors land, they don't go to the person that the house belonged to and tell them to clean it up.
    Well, they kind of do. The insurance of the blown away house will cover the clean up. The neighbour doesn't have to pay out of pocket.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris_w View Post
    Well, they kind of do. The insurance of the blown away house will cover the clean up. The neighbour doesn't have to pay out of pocket.
    Even if they can't even tell which house it was? I don't see how they could even tell when there is a bunch of jumbled up lumber where it came from, or half the time it is a mixture of more than one. In the last tornado that came through here about 10 miles away from my house sometimes things landed up to a mile away.
    Last edited by GloriaInTX; 05-10-2012 at 03:43 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GloriaInTX View Post
    Even if they can't even tell which house it was? I don't see how they could even tell when there is a bunch of jumbled up lumber where it came from, or half the time it is a mixture of more than one. In the last tornado that came through here about 10 miles away from my house sometimes things landed up to a mile away.
    Well, we don't specifically know whose garbage is washing up all over the beaches, but we know it came from Japan.

    There aren't tornados anywhere even remotely close to here, but I would assume if your roof was damaged from random debris that insurance would cover the costs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jessica1980 View Post
    What a tough call. Not like Japan did this on purpose. It would be nice if all countries got together to help each other out with the clean up. To me, on a smaller scale, if someone's piece of trash ends up on my front lawn I'll get rid of it. If my neighbor's entire trash pick up blows over in the wind and ends up on my lawn I would hope they would help to pick up. Does that make sense?
    Yes, it does make sense to me. It would be nice if other countries helped with some of the cleanup costs, just as countries all around the world pitched in to clean up the immediate damage in Japan after the earthquake & tsunami.

    I'd guess they're telling people to not touch things because there might be contamination. All kinds of things got washed out & thrown together, gas stations, rat poison, who knows what might be all over that stuff.
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    I think the ownership of the clean up operation should be held with whichever country it is being swept upon. Like PPs have said, this was a natural disaster so Japan should hold no responsibility. If Japan are willing to help out with the clean up then that's always a bonus.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kris_w View Post
    I don't get why they are telling individuals not to touch it. If there is something useable why not put it to good use?
    Because of this:


    Oil, gas, kerosene, experimental chemicals, formaldehyde, ash, anything could be on those materials. We have decreased our fish consumption greatly because of the toxicity in the sea.

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