Salish Sea Spill Map Project
In an effort to predict the behaviour of oil from a spill in the Salish Sea, and to alert coastal residents to that very real possibility, Raincoast and its partner the Georgia Strait Alliance have launched a study to map the potential spread of oil along the Kinder Morgan tanker route. For some of our drops, we have also teamed up with the Friends of the San Juans and the City of Vancouver.
Where could oil go?
To help answer this question, we have released over 4,000 small drift cards (4” x 6” pieces of bright yellow plywood, each with a unique serial number) at select locations along the shipping route from Vancouver to the Pacific Ocean. Just like a message in a bottle, the drift cards carry a simple reminder: THIS COULD BE OIL. When the drift cards are found and reported to us, their recovery locations help us map the course spilled oil might take, and how far it could travel. Our unique website allows real time drift card reporting and tracking of specific cards from drop to recovery.
While increasing public awareness of Kinder Morgan’s proposed pipeline expansion is important, this study will also be published in peer-reviewed journals, be used to validate and improve state-of-the-art ocean circulation models and ultimately help to establish which communities, recreational sites, species and sensitive habitats could be affected in the event of a spill.
Currently in its second year, the project has completed nearly 30 drift card drops releasing roughly 4,000 cards. With more than 1,500 recoveries reported, preliminary results show that impacts could be far-ranging with many areas along the shipping route at risk.
Adopt a Drift Card
Support the Spill Map Project and follow the results by Adopting a Drift Card. You will be provided with drift card numbers, their drop locations, and notified when and where your card has been found.
Drift Card Reporting
Drift cards recoveries from any location are important to us. View Drift Card Reporting and find out how the public is becoming part of this study.
Oil spill simulation gets locals talking about possibility of crude along the Salish Sea
Jenny Uechi / Vancouver Observer
Tamara Phillips was swimming near Stanley Park when her eye caught a glimpse of a yellow card floating along the water’s surface…
Oil Spill Simulated On B.C.’s Fraser River, Burrard Inlet
The Huffington Post B.C.
Researchers place bright yellow cards into the Fraser River to simulate how far a potential oil spill from the Trans Canada pipeline would spread…
Oil cards expected to wash up along Richmond’s shores
Graeme Wood / Richmond News
If you’ve walked along the dyke recently, you might be asking yourself: What are those yellow things floating in the Fraser River or stuck on the rocks…