Spring weather allowed us to turn our kayaks into ‘garbage barges’. American Canoe (ACA) in partnership with Subaru, have a program called the Stream to Sea Initiative. Through their website, you are able to order bags to collect garbage.
Armed with green bags, a ‘grabber arm’ and keen eyes, we paddled up the river and collected garbage we found along the Kalmazoo River shoreline. In just under an hour and a half, we had 3 big bags filled with everything from flip flops, a plastic ball, cans, plastic bags, endless styrofoam, bobbers, a ball, and countless plastic bottles. Hang on to your empty bottles, people! They are light and easy to have blow out of your watercraft!!
We filled our bags then headed home to weigh and sort it all out. 16.9 pounds of garbage is what we collected in just that short amount of time! All of it was logged (each piece and material counted and itemized) and reported online to the ACA website along with the coordinates/location where it was found. Then what could be recycled was re-bagged and the rest considered trash.
A fun way to make our community a cleaner place for everyone who visits, but mostly for the plants and animals that call that river their home!