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VIDEO: Volunteers Clean Up Little Hunting Creek

Stream is one of "trashiest" in Fairfax County.

Little Hunting Creek clean-up 2012. Video by Rachel Leonard for Patch.
Little Hunting Creek clean-up 2012. Video by Rachel Leonard for Patch.

Volunteers tackled Little Hunting Creek in Mount Vernon Saturday with a day-long cleanup that netted dozens of shopping carts, household items and mounds of trash from the polluted waterway.

Some wore waders, and others balanced delicately on rocks or by the creekside to pluck trash from the creek. The creek flows out of Huntley Meadows Park and through the Mount Vernon District before eventually emptying into the Potomac River.

Aside from containing trash, the creek also carries toxic pollutants.

Participants Saturday included volunteer Del. Scott Surovell (D-44th), and volunteers from Friends of Little Hunting Creek and the Alice Ferguson Foundation.

This article was originally published on April 15, 2012.

Martha Coleman April 16, 2012 at 12:43 PM
My son helped with the clean up. He was shocked at the amount of trash, etc. that was pulled from the creek. Many thanks to all of the volunteers for taking this on.
Wildermann April 16, 2012 at 01:46 PM
The majority of what was in what I collected was plastic shopping bags, cans and plastic bottles by numbers alone. The missing wheel in such efforts to clean and restore our waterways is the business lobbyists and legislature on such issues as passing bottle and plastic shopping bag bills. Scott sponsored a bill on the plastic shopping bags that was shot down. past efforts to pass beverage container refunds have been shot down. Such measures won't completely eliminate the problem but will help. Costco has a great model where the consumer is responsible for getting their purchases from store to home without providing plastic bags. As to shopping carts,the Aldi supermarket chain has a system where one puts a quarter in a slot box that releases the cart to the customer. The quarter is returned when the cart is returned. The new Walmart at Kings Crossing has an electronic system where if a customer attempts to take a shopping cart outside of the parking lot perimeter the wheels lock. Small things to ask of the businesses on Supervisor Jeff McKay's side of Richmond Highway that would go a long way in reducing the trash in this stream.
cej April 16, 2012 at 03:17 PM
Merchants need to take responsibility and address the issue of overflowing courtesy waste cans at the front of their businesses that aren't emptied when overflowing. On busy shopping days the overflow is blown into the roads and endss up in the storm system and eventually the creeks.
T Ailshire April 16, 2012 at 04:11 PM
Martin - perhaps we citizens need to lobby the business owners instead of the legislators. I am firmly in the camp that laws (especially those that aren't enforced, as so many of ours aren't) don't do a darned thing to help make society nicer. However, the measures you detail WILL work.
Paul Siegel April 16, 2012 at 09:41 PM
Seven years ago, this was officially THE TRASHIEST Stream in the County. See http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/news/2005/05158.htm

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