The U of T Trash Team has partnered with PortsToronto to deploy creative solutions to prevent and cleanup litter on our waterfront. Litter has been an issue PortsToronto has been fighting for years, which can be seen daily on their boom in Keating Channel. As a first step, PortsToronto is piloting Seabins – floating trash cans in the harbour that clean up litter as it floats by. Our role is to analyze plastics and microplastics captured by the newly installed Seabins on Toronto’s waterfront to measure their efficacy and share their success.
The Seabin pilot is being carried out in two phases.
- Phase 1 – Outer Harbour Marina
- Phase 2 – Pier 6
Additional bins were placed at Pier 6 in the inner harbour. For a more thorough assessment, we are quantifying and categorizing plastics and microplastics captured over a 7-day period and after wet events to measure the efficacy of Seabins over time. In addition, we are conducting visual surveys to quantify and characterize debris across the inner harbour to inform sources and fate of plastic pollution locally.
- Preliminary findings