Story URL: http://news.medill.northwestern.edu/washington/news.aspx?id=126611
Story Retrieval Date: 5/18/2013 10:42:54 PM CST
WASHINGTON -- Nearly two-thousand volunteers came out to help in the cleanup of the Anacostia River in anticipation of Earth Day.
The river is known for the large amount of garbage that piles up along its shores. On Saturday, area residents tried to change that. More than 40 tons of waste was collected from the shores and pulled out of the riverbed. It was a community effort, just like the organizers wanted.
"That's really one of our objectives, to bring people to the river," said Jim Foster, president of the Anacostia Watershed Society.
EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson was also on hand for the event. She spoke of the need for minority and low income communities to become active in environmental issues. Jackson also stressed the importance of grassroots efforts with regards to local environmental issues.
"Community activism and community connection to a place is really the inspiration for any environmental change," Jackson said.
Many of the volunteers present at the clean up where college students like Joe Ruzzi. The University of Maryland student volunteered with the rest of his fraternity.
"We decided that it is the least we can do, to spend a couple of hours cleaning up the park," Ruzzi said.
Organizers hope once people discover the innate beauty that the river holds, they will be more willing to participate in its conservation.