Connecticut River Cleanup Set for Sept. 23-24

View of the CT River from the balcony of Gillette Castle. Photo/Connecticut River Watershed Council
View of the CT River from the balcony of Gillette Castle. Photo/Connecticut River Watershed Council

New England’s largest river cleanup, the Source to Sea Cleanup on the Connecticut River, will be held on Friday & Saturday, September 23 & 24, 2016. This year marks the 20th anniversary of this multi-state effort.

Organized by the Connecticut River Watershed Council, the annual river cleanup takes place in all 4 states that share the 410-plus-mile Connecticut River basin (NH, VT, MA, CT). Each fall, thousands of volunteers of all ages and abilities clean the Connecticut and its tributaries on foot or by boat. Volunteers remove trash along rivers, streams, parks, boat launches, trails and more.

There are 3 ways for volunteers to get involved in the cleanup this year: 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, click here.

In 2015, more than 2,300 volunteers hauled over 50 tons of trash from river banks and waterways in the four river states. Volunteers remove everything from recyclables, fishing equipment and food waste to tires, televisions, and refrigerators. To date, volunteers have kept more than 947 tons of trash from polluting our rivers.

“Some really unbelievable things have been pulled from our rivers, including a cement mixer, parking meters, propane tanks and junk cars,” notes Charamut. This year, CRWC will continue cleaning up the many thousands of tires dumped along the Deerfield River in Greenfield, MA, will remove an abandoned oil-offloading platform in the Connecticut River in Wethersfield, CT, and remove a 3,000-gallon tank submerged in the Connecticut River near Wilgus State Park in Vermont.

“Generous financial support from lead sponsors—NRG Energy’s Middletown Generating Station, Pratt & Whitney, TransCanada, and Whistler—enable 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,” says CRWC Executive Director Andrew Fisk.

For more information, questions, contact CRWC’s Cleanup Coordinator Alicea Charamut at cleanup@ctriver.org or 860-704-0057. Learn more about the event.