Eco-Conscious Traveling

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Use Water Sparingly

The dry Mediterranean-like climate we enjoy means the islands receive very little rain during the warmer months.  Although the islands are surrounded by the sea, fresh water is in short supply.  Island communities are careful to conserve water so there's enough for residents, visitors and our ecosystems.   When visiting the islands, please be part of that effort:

  • Use tap water sparingly (e.g. turn water off when brushing teeth, take short showers)
  • Flush toilets only as needed
  • Take laundry home
  • Find uses for gray water from dishes and bath
  • Consider bringing your own drinking water

Recycle and Don't Litter

There are not many places for garbage to go on an island.  Forgotten bottles and bags often end up on island beaches, ruining everyone's enjoyment of the beauty of our shores.  Discarded tackle and soft plastic threaten the region's birds and other wildlife.  Please leave no trace when you visit the islands:

  • Visit one of the major islands' recycling depots to discard your recyclables.
  • Take your non-recyclable garbage away with you
  • Take some time to help steward the islands while beachcombing - organize a one-hour beach clean-up with your family

Respect Life in the Islands

Our islands are home to an exceptional diversity of birds, fish, intertidal life, marine and wildlife, and plants.  Though they might not show it, many of these species are particularly sensitive to human disturbance.  Please help us maintain the diversity of life that finds sanctuary in the islands:

  • Step carefully on beaches, meadows and forests.  Please stay on trails
  • Point out plants and marine critters, but don't pick them up
  • Give space to birds and animals on land and in the sea
  • Don't let your pet be a bully.  Restrain dogs and cats from chasing or killing wildlife

Be a Responsible Boater

Sheltered from the Pacific Ocean, pollution stays in the Salish Sea for years.  Boat pollution can contribute to shellfish contamination, unusual algae blooms, and declining fish populations.  Help us keep the waters you're traveling through clear and clean:

  • Use pump-out stations to dispose of sewage
  • Take care when fueling up
  • Use bilge filters or bilge pads
  • Maintain your boat
  • Keep your distance from marine wildlife and birds

For more information on responsible boating in this region, visit the Georgia Strait Alliance's Guide to Green Boating and the Cetus Research and Conservation Society Straitwatch program

More Information

Learn more about how you can be a friend of the islands when visiting:


Page last updated: 10/02/16
Copyright © The Island Trust Conservancy.     The Islands Trust Conservancy is a qualified donee under the Income Tax Act. Donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.