New Port Plans & Anchorages: Your Voice Needed

New Port Traffic Plans: Elimination, not Mitigation of Island Anchorages

How to Help

Opportunity for Input to New Port Marine Traffic Plans:
We Want Elimination of Island Anchorages - Mitigation Is Not a Solution

Tell the port that this problem can be solved by better scheduling of ships and phasing out of these wasteful and unnecessary anchorages. Elimination, not mitigation!

Join the letter campaign and copy-paste-send a letter to the Port of Vancouver:
Link to the letter campaign of our umbrella organization South Coast Ship Watch Alliance (SCSWA). We are hard at work together with other islands and coastal communities.

New Fact Sheet: How anchorages impact Health & Environment

New White Paper: How this anchorage problem can be solved.

Record Freighter Numbers and New Risks with Container Ships

Details about freighter numbers and new developments have been released in an update by the Centre for Marine Affairs.

The November floods in BC disrupted the railway system for two weeks but caused multiple months of marine traffic congestion, with island anchorages in full use for weeks.

Disruptive climate events are now the new normal. They are not an excuse for marine traffic chaos and further damage to our environment because of a lack of planning by the Port of Vancouver and Transport Canada. We need sustainable contingency plans for climate emergencies and modern tools for optimized ship arrivals.

This ongoing anchorage problem is not really caused by disruption of supply chains. The problem is that new ships continue to arrive as if nothing had happened, due to the reluctance of port and industry to address the solvable issue of vessel arrival management.

Slow economic recovery from COVID-19 has caused global delays for container ships. While other port cities quickly adapted and found solutions to keep vessels away and protect their residents, the Port of Vancouver simply continues to direct ships into island waters.

Problems with lineups of waiting coal and grain ships have been growing for a decade. Instead of addressing the issue, the Port has now added container ships to the burden of our islands. This new traffic brings new risks. The fire on the MV ZIM Kingston container ship in October 2021 clearly demonstrates that the islands are now exposed to such risks.

Any of these container ships could carry hazardous cargo that could burn or leak, and pollute our air and water in the most serious ways. These risks are not acceptable.

In the Southern Gulf Islands, the avoidable annual greenhouse gas emissions by stationary freighters exceeded 50,000 tonnes for the first time in 2020.

Despite the public commitments by the Port of Vancouver to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and create a carbon-free port by 2050, this pollution problem has been ignored for over a decade and has now grown into extreme proportions.


What can we do?

(1) Join the letter campaign and copy-paste-send a letter to the Port of Vancouver:
Link to the letter campaign of our umbrella organization South Coast Ship Watch Alliance

(2) Send a Complaint about Noise and Light Disturbance to the Port of Vancouver.
The required name of a ship can be looked up at marine traffic websites such as or a local ship monitoring website.

(3) Get friends and neighbours to support the cause and sign up to our newsletter at

Thank you for support to keep the Gulf Islands protected and free from heavily industrialized use!