Hunterdon County river clean up protects water quality, yields some ‘strange items’
The Hunterdon County Health Department’s annual Clean Communities River Cleanup, held on Sept. 21, yielded nearly sixty bags of trash and recycling, including a suit and a pair of shoes, Freeholder Sue Soloway reported at the Dec. 17 Freeholder Board meeting.
“The cleanup program is supported by a grant from the New Jersey Clean Communities Coalition, which is dedicated to litter and river clean-up projects. The event coincides with the International Coastal Cleanup, and is held in coordination with Delaware Township, the DNR Canal, and West Amwell Township,” Soloway said.
“Over 100 volunteers from Delaware Township, West Amwell, Lambertville, and Kingwood, and from the County Parks and Recreation Division and Health Department, and the Delaware River Greenway Partnership, worked throughout the day to clean debris from the river side and tow path from Frenchtown to West Amwell, stretching nearly 18 miles,” Soloway said.
The volunteers collected 48 bags of trash and 11 bags of recycling materials, including that suit and shoes. You have to wonder in this day and age how people can just discard items along or in the river.”
Some of the items collected were; four bags of scrap metal and five containers of bulky debris too large for regular trash bags, fifteen tires came out of the middle of the river and one 50-gallon barrel, four metal pipes, two 20-foot sections of sewer pipe, and a few inner tubes and other floating devices.
“The program helps to beautify the county, improve the environment and protects the waterway. I extend our thanks to our Clean Communities Coordinator, Jenny O’Sullivan, the County’s Solid Waste and Vector Control Divisions, the Municipal and State Parks Clean Communities coordinators, and all the volunteers who participated in the successful river clean up,” Soloway said.
The Clean Communities grant requires the County to implement litter abatement programs that incorporate enforcement, education and cleanup activities. The program activities are tracked through statistical and progress reporting to the state annually.
For those who wish to volunteer, registration for the river cleanup and other Clean Communities events can click here.