Two Massachusetts Organizations Call for an End to Trashed Rivers
GREENFIELD — The Connecticut River Conservancy (CRC) and the Charles River Watershed Assoc. (CRWA), two national leaders in the effort to clean up the nation’s rivers, called on Massachusetts lawmakers to take legislative action on reducing trash before it reaches rivers.
The two organizations pointed to a number of bills currently working their way through the Massachusetts State House that would, if approved, go a long way to reduce or eliminate trash that might otherwise end up in the state’s waterways. The proposed legislation includes measures to eliminate single-use plastic bags, restrict single-use plastic straws, and eliminate foam from food containers.
“For years, thousands of volunteers from these two organizations have been doing their part to keep our rivers clean,” noted CRC Cleanup Coordinator Stacey Lennard. “Now we want decision makers at the state level to do their part in helping redesign our economy so there isn’t waste in the first place.”
Added Emily Norton, CRWA’s executive director, “with environmental regulations being rolled back weekly at the federal level, it is more important than ever that we have strong protections for our waterways at both the state and the local levels. We need your help to make sure that happens.”
CRC and CRWA also called on the public to join them in urging legislators to do their part by:
• Signing CRC’s petition telling manufacturers, businesses, and local government to lead the way on overhauling how plastic and other waste products are made and used, and to take greater responsibility in solving the trash crisis (visit www.ctriver.org/takeaction);
• Joining CRC and CRWA at Lobby for Your Rivers Day on Thursday, March 28 to receive training in how to talk to elected officials about better pollution policies (visit bit.ly/LobbyForRivers to sign up);
• Joining the 23rd annual Source to Sea Cleanup on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 27-28, along the Connecticut River and tributary streams across the four-state watershed (visit www.ctriver.org/cleanupto learn more); and
• Participating in the 20th annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup on Saturday, April 27 from 9 a.m. to noon. It is co-hosted by the Charles River Conservancy, Charles River Esplanade, Emerald Necklace Conservancy, Massachusetts DCR, Waltham Land Trust, and state Sen. William Brownsberger (www.crwa.org/cleanup).