Volunteers pick up nearly 500 pounds of trash from local waterways

Staff Reports Posted 21 September 2015 at 12:00 am

Provided photo – Some of the volunteers are pictured by the widewaters section of the Erie Canal along Presbyterian Road near Knowlesville.

Volunteers collected nearly 500 pounds of trash from local waterways this past Saturday when Orleans County participated in the American Littoral Society’s annual New York State Shoreline and Beach Cleanup.

The 23 volunteers collected, recorded and removed more than 2,919 items of trash weighing 489 pounds from local waterways over the course of three hours, said Dennis Kirby, manager of the Soil and Water Conservation District in Orleans County.

The county has participated in the garbage pickup for 15 years and has collected over 20,000 pounds of trash.

The volunteers convened at 9 a.m. at Bullard Park in Albion for instructions and introductions before dispersing to assigned locations. Groups tackled trash at locations along Glenwood Lake, Butts Park, Lake Alice, Point Breeze and the Erie Canal.

At noon everyone reconvened back at Bullard Park to weigh the 18 bags of trash collected along with various items such as TV’s, fishing gear, and discarded tires.

Every item collected, down to the last cigarette butt, was recorded and categorized on data sheets that were then sent to the American Littoral Society for statistical analysis along with data submitted by all the groups participating across the country.

This allows them to observe and track trends in sources of trash. In Orleans County, over half of the items collected were from food and beverage related items.

Along with concerned citizens, volunteers participating in the cleanup represented 4-H clubs and local high school students. This event was sponsored locally by the Orleans County Soil & Water Conservation District in conjunction with the Orleans County Water Quality Coordinating Committee.