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Volunteers Needed for Source to Sea River Cleanup This Fall

GREENFIELD — The Connecticut River Watershed Council’s (CRWC) 19th annual Source to Sea Cleanup will be held Friday and Saturday, Sept. 25 and 26.

The annual, two-day event is coordinated by CRWC in all four states of the 410-mile Connecticut River basin. Each fall, thousands of volunteers of all ages and abilities head out to clean the Connecticut River and its tributaries on foot or by boat. Volunteers remove trash along rivers, streams, parks, boat launches, trails, and more.

“Source to Sea Cleanup volunteers have worked hard to combat litter and illegally dumped trash,” said Alicea Charamut, CRWC river steward and organizer of the cleanup. “Their hard work and dedication is impressive and inspiring.”

In 2014, more than 2,000 volunteers hauled over 47 tons of trash from riverbanks and waterways in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Connecticut. Volunteers use human power and sometimes heavy equipment to pull out everything from recyclables, fishing equipment, and food waste to tires, televisions, refrigerators, and junk cars. To date, volunteers have prevented more than 897 tons of trash from polluting area rivers.

There are three ways to get involved in the cleanup: report a trash site in need of cleaning, find a cleanup group near you to join, or organize and register your own local cleanup group. For more information or to register for the event, visit www.ctriver.org/cleanup.

“If your group wants to get involved but needs a cleanup site, contact us to learn about reported trash sites that may be near you,” said Charamut. Anyone with questions or trash tips can contact Charamut at [email protected] or (860) 704-0057.

“Generous financial support from lead sponsors — NRG’s Middletown Generating Station, Pratt & Whitney, and TransCanada — enables us to organize the thousands of volunteers who participate in the cleanup, and to take on complex projects that require the use of heavy equipment, scuba divers, and other professionals to get those really trashed places cleaned up,” said CRWC Executive Director Andrew Fisk. CRWC plans to continue efforts on cleaning up the tire dump along the Deerfield River in Greenfield, as well as removing an abandoned exposed pipe in the Connecticut River in Holyoke and a number of fuel tanks in various rivers in New Hampshire and Vermont.

The Connecticut River Watershed Council works to protect the watershed from source to sea. To learn more about CRWC, or to join the effort and help protect local rivers, visit www.ctriver.org.

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