Government of Canada funds the removal and disposal of abandoned boats through the Oceans Protection Plan

News release

March 12, 2018    Ladysmith, British Columbia    Transport Canada

Canada’s coastlines are a source of inspiration and pride. Even for Canadians living inland, many of the jobs that support middle-class families, and the products used every day, depend on Canada’s waterways. These coastlines are one of our most valuable resources, and with them come tremendous responsibility to protect them. That responsibility includes cleaning up abandoned boats and protecting our waters for tomorrow. As abandoned boats are a growing problem across Canada, the Government of Canada, under the Oceans Protection Plan, is working diligently to deter this irresponsible practice.

Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Marc Garneau, announced the recipients of funding of more than $1.3 million through two programs aiming to remove abandoned boats.

  • The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, BC Parks and the Town of Ladysmith together will receive up to $90,000 in total for the removal and disposal of 12 abandoned boats and wrecks from their communities.
  • Over $140,000 will be divided among four harbour authorities for the removal of 9 abandoned boats at small craft, commercial fishing harbours owned by Fisheries and Oceans Canada. The recipients are Ford Cove Harbour Authority (British Columbia), Powell River Harbour Authority (British Columbia), Port Edward Harbour Authority (British Columbia), and Port Saunders Harbour Authority (Newfoundland).
  • The Capital Regional District, the Pender Harbour Advisory Council, and the District of Sechelt are collectively receiving up to $90,000 in total for the assessment of 26 abandoned boats and wrecks. Once the assessments have been completed, these organizations will be eligible to request funding through the Program to remove and dispose of the boats, should they meet the Program’s criteria.
  • As part of the Education and Awareness component of the Abandoned Boats Program, close to $540,000 will be divided among five recipients over the next three years. They are: Capital Regional District, the Boating British Columbia Association, the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Boating Ontario Association and the Eastern Nova Scotia Marine Stewardship Society. They will develop and lead education and outreach campaigns for small boat owners and the boating communities located across Canada.
  • Innovation Maritime (in partnership with le Centre de développement des composites du Québec), CleanTech Renewables Limited and PlaySafe Production are collectively receiving over $475,000 over the next three years to research and develop environmentally friendly methods to recycle and dispose of boats at their end-of-life.

The Oceans Protection Plan, a $1.5 billion initiative, is the largest investment ever made to protect Canada’s coasts and waterways. This national strategy is creating a world-leading marine safety system that provides economic opportunities for Canadians today, while protecting our coastlines and clean water for generations to come. The strategy is being developed in close collaboration with Indigenous peoples, local stakeholders and coastal communities.


“Abandoned boats are not just an eyesore; they are a safety concern and a financial burden to communities. The Oceans Protection Plan’s Abandoned Boats Program – one of many initiatives launched to improve the issue of abandoned boats in Canada – is providing crucial financial support to communities, like those of British Columbia. Our government is also pursuing other measures to reduce the number of problem vessels that pose hazards in Canadian waters, and support the preservation and restoration of marine ecosystems.”

The Honourable Marc Garneau
Minister of Transport

“Supporting fishers and the commercial fishing industry is important to our government. Abandoned and wrecked vessels pose serious risks to small craft harbours, coastal communities and safe navigation. As part of the Oceans Protection Plan, we are taking real action to address these, which means enhanced safety for fishers and better protection for our waters.”

The Honourable Dominic LeBlanc
Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

Quick facts

  • The Abandoned Boats Program provides grant and contribution funding to assist in the assessment, removal and disposal of abandoned and/or wrecked small boats posing a hazard in Canadian waters. The Program also helps to educate small boat owners about how to responsibly manage their boats. It also supports research on boat recycling and environmentally responsible boat design.

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Small Craft Harbours Abandoned and Wrecked Vessels Removal Program, provides support to Harbour Authorities and other eligible recipients in removing abandoned and wrecked vessels from fishing harbours owned by Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

  • Through the Small Craft Harbours, Abandoned and Wrecked Vessels Removal Program, and the Abandoned Boats Program, the Government of Canada facilitates the removal of abandoned boats, educates boat owners about their responsibilities, and supports research into improving recycling options.

  • Both programs are currently accepting applications for the assessment, removal and disposal of abandoned and/or wrecked small boats posing a hazard in Canadian waters. You have until March 15, 2018, to submit an application for funding.

  • The Abandoned Boats Program is also launching a third call for proposals for the assessment, removal and disposal of abandoned and/or wrecked small boats on April 3, 2018 that will be open until March 31, 2019. The Abandoned and Wrecked Vessels Removal Program will also be launching a third call for proposals at a date yet to be determined.

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Delphine Denis
Press Secretary
Office of the Honorable Marc Garneau
Minister of Transport, Ottawa

Media Relations
Transport Canada, Ottawa

Media Inquiries
Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Canadian Coast Guard

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