The forest isn’t your landfill

Seriously stop - that is the message from a non-profit about illegal dumping in the back country.

The do-gooders at Okanagan Forest Task Forest (OFTF) are back at it.

The volunteers at the local non-profit are all outdoor enthusiasts who care about the environment and they are sending a message to law-breakers — stop dumping garbage in nature’s backyard.

Spokesperson for OFTF Kane Blake has been waiting for the snow to melt in the backcountry before he got serious about cleaning up the illegal dumps in the region.

The area off forest service roads from Postill Lake Road to Gillard are currently littered with garbage burn piles, shot-gun shell casings and even old cars.

OFTF held a cleanup on April 1 in West Kelowna alongside employees for Shaw Communications. More than 50 volunteers attended the Bartley Road area for the annual clean-up event, it was the first of the year for OFTF for which Kane said will be an incredibly busy season ahead.

Organized last year by a group of concerned citizens, OFTF aims to cleanup after illegal dumps and keep the forest the way its suppose to be — free of garbage.

Kane was just perusing the back country, a favourite past-time of his, on Wednesday when he discovered a massive mess at a Gillard shooting range.

He was disgusted with the site and attempted to clean up as much as he could, but he will need to bring in 40-yard bins to really tackle the garbage.

“Someone had cut up stumps, there was so much glass, receipts, shell casings,” he explained in a video posted to Facebook. “I’m doing my part to take care of it.”

A cleanup is planned for the Postill Lake Road area on June 3.

Kane works closely with the Conservation Office and the Central Okangan Regional District Waste Management office to help clean up the mess as well as find out who is responsible for the illegal dumps.

If you would like to get involved with cleaning up the Okanagan forests please contact OFTF or check out the app. To report an illegal dumpsite please e-mail info@rdos.bc.ca or call 1-866-566-3867 (1-866-5 NO DUMP).

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