A Penticton man, Andrew Drouin, has created a petition to make shotgun shells refundable in hopes that it will motivate people to return the often littered plastic casings. (South Okanagan Trail Alliance / Change.org)

Petition seeks to clean up Okanagan forests ‘carpeted’ with shotgun shells

Penticton man says making shot-gun shells refundable would create cleaner forests

A Penticton man is fed up with finding shotgun shells littered throughout the Okanagan’s wilderness.

Andrew Drouin has been mapping trails in the Okanagan for years. On many trails, Drouin said, one can find countless areas littered with thousands of empty plastic shot-gun shells.

Tired of the eyesore and blatant littering, Drouin launched a petition in an attempt to bring awareness and a government response to a problem that he said is only getting worse.

READ MORE: Eco-friendly bus service seeks to add Kelowna to Osoyoos route

Drouin’s petition urges the provincial government to implement a five cent refundable fee on plastic shotgun shells.

Drouin hopes that making the shells refundable would encourage people to collect them and return them, ultimately leaving less litter in the forest.

“As soon as you start getting out of city limits it becomes sort of a free-for-all zone as far firing off guns,” said Drouin.

He explained that many gun owners will often bring miscellaneous items to the forest to shoot for fun.

“They’re bringing up everything. They’re bringing up old televisions, propane tanks, you name it… Everything you can imagine they’re bringing up to the bush to shoot for fun.”

Drouin said the ground at these “illegal shooting ranges” is constantly carpeted with plastic shot-gun shell casings left behind by gun owners.

As a member of the Carmi Residents Association, Drouin often participate in bush clean-ups. He said they consistently rake up tens of thousands of shells, not just in the Penticton area but all over the valley.

“Year after year it’s the same thing, you can clean up a spot until there isn’t a shell on the ground but if you go back two weeks later it’s covered in shells again,” Drouin explained.

Regardless of whether a refund encourages gun owners to pick up their shells, Drouin said he believes making the shells refundable would encourage other groups, such as Cub Scouts, to clean them up and return them as a fundraising activity while also promoting environmental consciousness

In the Penticton area, Drouin said the forest near Ellis Creek canyon is particularly bad.

The petition has been active for more than two weeks as of May 25, but Drouin said he still hasn’t received any response from the government.

He said if the petition gets good support he will pass it on to local government and ask for the support of a private members bill.

READ MORE: Petition urges City of Kamloops to rename road after victim in Snowbirds crash

@PentictonNews
editor@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Environmentguns

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Vernon high school volleyball player makes national team

Liam Remple has been named to the U19 Men’s Team Canada Volleyball roster

Okanagan Realtors donate big to North Westside fire department

Two Kelowna-area Realtors made a generous donation to the North Westside Fire… Continue reading

Water quality advisory rescinded for Vernon users

Emergency repairs on a water main resulted in water quality advisory

SilverStar security recovers stolen bike

Reminders to residents to keep bicycles locked up, eyes open for suspicious activity

Orphaned Okanagan beavers admitted to rehab centre

The two beavers are in the care of the Fawcett Family Wildlife Health Centre

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

Princeton high school drops ‘Rebels’ sports team name, citing links with U.S. Civil War

Name and formerly-used images “fly in the face” of the district’s human rights policy, says board chair

Seymour Arm landslide interrupts drinking water to 500 people

The July 3 slide damaged a water system and a logging road.

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Stop enforcing sex work laws during COVID-19, advocates say

There are provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws that make workers immune from prosecution, but not from arrest

Liberal party finished 2019 having spent $43 million, raised $42 million

All political parties had until midnight June 30 to submit their financial reports for last year

B.C. teacher loses licence after sexual relationships with two recently-graduated students

The teacher won’t be allowed to apply for a teaching certificate until 2035

White-throated sparrows have changed their tune, B.C. study unveils

Study marks an unprecedented development scientists say has caused them to sit up and take note

Bench plaque recognizes former Summerland firefighter

Volunteers with fire department set up plaque in honour of Richard Estabrooks

Most Read