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N. Fulton keeps rivers alive

Annual waterway cleanup draws hundreds

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, second from right, stopped by for a visit at Riverside Park. With her are Roswell City Councilmember Elizabeth Clark Price, second from left, and Roswell Mayor Jere Wood, center. RON JACKSON. (click for larger version)

October 02, 2013
ROSWELL, Ga. – Nearly a ton of debris and trash was collected Sept. 28 during the annual Rivers Alive cleanup of the Chattahoochee River and surrounding streams.

In Roswell, 206 volunteers collected 1,220 pounds of garbage. Trash continues to be a problem despite more recycling and trash initiatives, organizers say.

The city of Alpharetta teams up with Roswell every year, and this year saw more than 100 volunteers turn out to help clean up roadsides, plant a butterfly garden and collect garbage along the Greenway.

On the Greenway alone, nine large trash bags were filled this year.

"When volunteers pitch in and do this work, sometimes it's the only way some of these things get accomplished," said Terry Porter, environmental program coordinator with Alpharetta.

A lot of the garbage comes from other places and ends up in the Greenway or streams, Porter said.

"Non-point source pollution is our No. 1 threat to water quality," Porter said. "The debris that washes off the land usually ends up in the waterways. That really contributes to degradation of water quality."

In previous years, volunteers have found a telephone booth, toilets, a 50-pound bag of onions and tires.

"I couldn't be more pleased with what our volunteers accomplished year," Porter said. "It's all about keeping water clean."

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Editor, Milton Herald
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Tags: Community & Outreach

  1. report print email
    Rivers Alive
    October 03, 2013 | 10:35 AM

    Keep Roswell Beautiful is very pleased with the results of our event at Riverside Park. Over the last 6 years, we have seen trash collected go from 6 tons to just under 1 ton! We thank all the volunteers who came out to the event and everyone who is recognizing the importance of placing trash where it belongs which is a trash can or recycling container and NOT the river.

    Janet Liberman
  2. report print email
    N. Fulton keeps rivers alive
    October 03, 2013 | 10:46 AM

    Thanks to these great people for helping clean the river. The Chattahoochee River needs more “River Heroes” like these volunteers.
    Unfortunately, the pollution you cannot see is what is really bad- oil and gas products, lawn chemicals, weed defoliant, industrial metal cleaners, antifreeze, paint, soaps, sewage systems leaks and over flows that contain who knows what.

    steve steel
  3. report print email
    Keeping rivers clean
    October 04, 2013 | 11:05 AM

    While all the debris in our rivers and streams isn't solely due to people littering, much of it is due to littering.

    We need more stringent laws for littering, steeper fines, and most importantly, enforcement of such laws.

    Roswell and Alpharetta both have curbside recycling programs. But how many residents actually participate?

    I live in an upper-middle class development with 30 homes, and I'm the only one that recycles. It's amazing how much plastic, cardboard, newspapers and other paper and aluminum goes onto my curb every Wednesday morning.

    I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I just threw all this discarded stuff in the regular trash. It's a lot of stuff!

    Get with the program people! I realize recycling can be a pain, but it's the right thing to do.

    Zen Galacticore
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