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Unseen garbage hauled up from Cultus Lake by volunteer divers

Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans tackled the popular 'cliff jumping/drinking' spot in Lindell Beach near Chilliwack last month.
Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans tackled a popular cliff jumping spot near Lindell Beach last month. The volunteers hauled up more than 700 lbs of trash from the depths of Cultus Lake

You wouldn't believe what lies beneath the lake surface.

More than 700 lbs of bottles, cans and trash were recently pulled up from the depths of Cultus Lake.

Seven volunteers with Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans tackled a popular "cliff jumping/drinking" spot near Lindell Beach last month.

"Lindell Beach residents, we leave you a cleaner lake to enjoy," wrote Henry Wang, one of the divers with 25 cleanup dives to his name, after they spent some time at Cultus.

The group of divers strive to "make a positive impact" on the ocean and local lakes, performing cleanup dives on a regular basis around B.C..

They often use large mesh bags to collect bottles and cans underwater, like the bags pictured below used to store onions.

Along with a dive crew, the divers pulled out 705.8 lbs from Cultus, and since 2013 have hauled out 18,929.8 lbs of garbage from local waters.

"We hope that by removing the often unseen and ignored garbage that is underwater in our waterways, we can pass on a cleaner and healthier environment to our next generation.

"Sad part is, there is no end," he said.

Wang and friends have been scuba diving around Vancouver since 2004, and became involved with some marine conservancy projects.

"My dive partners and I began exploring some of our local lakes and ocean shoreline areas that have a lot of underwater garbage accumulation.

"What we found was quite shocking so we began a grassroots effort to remove all the garbage from these bodies of water."

The organization of volunteer divers now survives on donations, raising almost $8000 over the past three years.

The dive crew at least had a lot of appreciation for how they were received here at Cultus Lake.

They thanked BC Parks for hosting the divers with a great campsite and view lakeside.

"We were pleased to kick back with our own little beach. What a treat."

They also thanked Arcteryx for storing their trailer, and Ocean Quest Dive Centre for the tanks' air fills.

See more Donations welcome.

Jennifer Feinberg

About the Author: Jennifer Feinberg

I have been a Chilliwack Progress reporter for 20+ years, covering the arts, city hall, as well as Indigenous, and climate change stories.
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