VANCOUVER - The Vancouver Aquarium and the World Wildlife Fund are teaming up to recruit volunteers to help clean up debris that's heading to B.C.'s shores from last year's tsunami in Japan.
Everything from bottles, plastics, fishing paraphernalia and appliances is expected to wash up on North America's coastline.
The aquarium's Jill Dwyer is in charge of a registry of volunteers needed to collect the junk, and she said people can sign up for the cleanup registry at www.shorelinecleanup.ca.
"We don't really know when the majority of the debris is going to start hitting our shorelines, where it's going to hit or how much," Dwyer said Friday.
"What we're doing is just getting a list of volunteers who would be willing to help when needed and then we'll connect them with the site co-ordinator or the local people on the ground who would actually be organizing the cleanup."
Dwyer said ocean debris could be harmful to wildlife if it contains chemicals or if animals ingest items or become entangled in them.
According to some estimates, the March 2011 tsunami washed 1.5 million tonnes of debris into the Pacific Ocean.
The recruitment effort is separate from the annual Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, which has been happening across Canada every September for the last 19 years.
A spring cleanup of shorelines involving students began in B.C. last year and has now started in Ontario.