Fuel tanks, abandoned pipes, thousands of tires, and cars

Greenfield, MA – Litter is seemingly everywhere and is a particular problem along our waterways where storm drains dump trash after rain storms. But did you know there are much larger trash items lurking in or along our rivers? The Connecticut River Conservancy (CRC) is hosting their 22nd annual Source to Sea Cleanup on September 28 & 29, 2018. This effort helps solve the problem of both small and large trash in our rivers. For more information, visit ctriver.org/cleanup.

“Some really unbelievable things have been pulled from our rivers, including a cement mixer, parking meters, propane tanks, and junk cars,” says Stacey Lennard, CRC Cleanup Coordinator. This year, in addition to working with over 100 local cleanup groups across the four Connecticut River states (NH, VT, MA, CT) to remove about 50 tons of small trash, CRC will continue working on the cleanup of these large trash items:

  • Hartland, VTSUCCESS! In August, 2018, CRC worked with Canonica Farm & Forest Services to remove a large concrete culvert that flooding had washed into Babcock Brook, a tributary of the Ottauquechee River.
  • Weathersfield, VTSUCCESS! On September 11, 2018 CRC worked with Commercial Divers Plus, Inc., Silvio O. Conte Fish & Wildlife Refuge, the Town of Weathersfield, VT,  and the State of VT to remove a 1,500 gallon fuel tank from the Connecticut River.
  • Greenfield, MA – Multiple junk cars will be removed from a small brook near the Green River in Murphy Park. Nartowicz Tree Services will assist with the removal.
  • Holyoke, MA – The Silvio O. Conte Fish & Wildlife Refuge will lead the removal efforts of a long length of abandoned pipe in the Connecticut River exposed at low flow.
  • Greenfield, MA – Thousands of tires dumped along the Deerfield River will be removed and recycled. For the third year, LANE Construction will assist with large equipment, trucks, and employee volunteers.
  • Brattleboro, VT – Thousands of tires dumped along the Connecticut River will be removed and recycled. Assistance from The Marina Restaurant, WTSA Radio, Integrated Solar, and Brattleboro Tire.

There are a number of large cleanup sites that CRC still need help with. If you, someone or a business you know can help offer large equipment or other disposal services, please contact CRC at 413-772-2020 x211 or cleanup@ctriver.org.

This year, CRC is asking Cleanup participants and all who enjoy our rivers to join them in demanding an end to trashed rivers. Photos of trash – especially tires and plastic bags, bottles, and Styrofoam – found during the Cleanup will help illustrate the problem. A petition will put pressure on legislators and corporate decision-makers to implement solutions to reduce trash. Sign the petition, submit your photos, and more at ctriver.org/takeaction.

“Our goal is to keep trash and tires from getting in our rivers in the first place and to eventually put ourselves out of the business of cleaning up our rivers. We all have a responsibility to solve this problem—individuals, manufacturers, businesses, and government,” says CRC Executive Director Andrew Fisk.

Lead Source to Sea Cleanup sponsor, Eversource, is pleased to support CRC’s efforts. “It’s great to be able to take action that makes a difference,” said Eversource President of Corporate Citizenship Rod Powell. “At Eversource we’re always ready to roll up our sleeves because we believe actions speak louder than words, especially when it comes to protecting and preserving our environment.  So, we’re pleased to be hitting our waterways with buckets, rakes and gloves in hand to help clean and preserve our natural heritage. Together with the folks at Source to Sea Cleanup, we’re in good company.”

CRC encourages you to join the 22nd annual Source to Sea Cleanup to make a difference in your town. Each fall, over 2,000 volunteers fan out along the Connecticut River and tributary streams in four states (NH, VT, MA, CT). Over the past 22 years, cleanup volunteers have removed more than 1,043 tons of trash from the Connecticut River basin. To find a cleanup group near you, visit ctriver.org/cleanup and click on ‘Join a Group.’

Since 1952, Connecticut River Conservancy has been the voice for the Connecticut River watershed, from source to sea. We collaborate with partners across four states to protect and advocate for your rivers and educate and engage communities. We bring people together to prevent pollution, improve habitat, and promote enjoyment of your river and its tributary streams. Healthy rivers support healthy economies. To learn more about CRC, or to make a contribution to help protect the Connecticut River, visit ctriver.org.