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Massive illegal dump cleaned up

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – A huge, illegal dump in the Kootenays visible from space has finally been cleaned up.

Almost 240 tonnes, or 529,000 pounds, of junk was removed from Crown land at Oscar Creek near Ymir, about 30 km south of Nelson, earlier this month.

The project took about six days to complete. Special equipment, including a long-reach backhoe, was brought in to take out everything from old cars and appliances to furniture and animal carcasses. Some of the slopes at the site were 45 degrees, making it difficult for crews to negotiate.

People have been using the site for more than 30 years. It was so big, it could be seen on Google Earth.

Now that the site has been cleared, new soil has been added and topped with pulp biosolids. Two-hundred seedlings as well as grass have been planted.

The provincial government says local volunteers and businesses helped with the cleanup. “No Dumping” signs will be posted at the site and the area will be monitored regularly.

Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Minister Steve Thomson says the pollution was not only unsightly, but could have poisoned wildlife and impacted water quality.

He is encouraging people to report offenders to their closest FrontCounter BC office or call the Report All Poachers and Polluters line at 1-877-952-7277.

Dumping waste on Crown land is an offence under the Environmental Management Act.