Volunteers Clear Pound After Pound of Trash from Waterways
Washington PA Observer Reporter
17 June 2012
By Michael Bradwell, Business editor
More than 600 volunteers picked up 250 tires and 25 pounds of
trash along waterways in five Western Pennsylvania counties during
Saturday's 22nd annual River Sweep.
The annual event, which took place at 23 cleanup sites in
Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Washington and Westmoreland
counties, is a six-state effort to clean up litter and debris in
the Ohio River watershed, the largest organized volunteer river
cleanup effort in the country. The event winds through Ohio,
Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Indiana, West Virginia and Illinois,
covering more than 2,400 miles of shoreline.
"Volunteers came early and got the job done quickly before the
heat of the day," said Pennsylvania River Sweep coordinator Betsy
Mallison. "We saw less trash on some of our sites, but on others
like Cowanshannock in Armstrong County and in Duck Hollow,
Allegheny County, volunteers could have cleaned for days and
Mallison said a major reason for less debris this year at some
sites was the lack of high water, which deposits greater amounts
of trash along waterways.
Locally, 15 volunteers cleaned the section of Millers Run behind
the Cecil post office, producing 35 bags of trash and seven tires.
At the other nearby site, a section of Chartiers Creek at
Chartiers Park in Bridgeville, 25 volunteers collected 30 bags of
trash and 11 tires.
The event is sponsored in Pennsylvania by the state Department of
Environmental Protection, the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation
Commission and a number of Pennsylvania corporate sponsors, many
of whom sponsored cleanup crews as part of Saturday's event.
But as in past years, Mallison said the volunteer effort was drawn
from all corners of the area's population.
"It's the combination of community groups, churches, scout troops,
sportsmen's groups, concerned citizens and corporate volunteers
who all come together to make an impact on our waterways,"
Mallison said. "The River Sweep builds awareness of our