360 volunteers from Whitfield and Murray Counties participated in the 20th Annual Conasauga River Watershed Clean-up on Saturday, October 25. The annual event took place during the United Way’s “Make a Difference Day”. Volunteers spent the morning removing trash, debris, and invasive plants from seven sites in the two counties. Overall, volunteers collected and removed 10,630 pounds of trash, which included 20 tires.
Event organizers want to thank everyone who participated and contributed to the success of this year’s event. The amount of clean-up time donated by volunteers, approximately 1,440 hours, is valued at $29,908. Volunteers received a t-shirt and a 2015 calendar or coffee mug customized with images of the Conasauga watershed in appreciation for their participation.
Organizers want to especially thank this year’s funding sponsors: Shaw Industries, J&J Industries, Dalton Utilities, Dalton-Whitfield Solid Waste Authority, Georgia Rivers Alive, The Nature Conservancy, and the Conasauga River Alliance. Also, they would like to recognize these additional organizations that helped coordinated the event: Carpet & Rug Institute, Conasauga River Alliance, Dalton State College, Dalton Utilities, Dalton-Whitfield Solid Waste Authority, Keep Chatsworth-Murray Beautiful, Keep Dalton-Whitfield Beautiful, Limestone Valley RC & D, The Nature Conservancy, and Murray County Extension.
The Conasauga River, one of the six most biologically diverse freshwater river systems in the United States, supports 24 endangered species and a dozen other imperiled species, including the Southern Pigtoe mussel and the Conasauga logperch, a fish found nowhere else in the world. The Conasauga Watershed Clean-up has long been a part of Rivers Alive, a statewide campaign to clean and preserve over 70,000 miles of Georgia’s rivers and streams.
Rivers Alive continues to be the state’s and one of the South’s largest volunteer efforts to beautify water resources. So far this year, 8,900 volunteers have participated in 192 clean-up events through out the state and have removed 388,308 pounds of garbage from Georgia waterways. For more information about efforts in other areas or the statewide campaign visit www.RiversAlive.org.