PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) - An estimated 6000 volunteers statewide participated in the 25th annual Clean the Bay Day Saturday.
The event, organized by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, included 20 cities and counties throughout Virginia including all of Virginia's 20 state parks that are in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
Organizers say that volunteers removed approximately 125,000 pounds of litter and debris along 500 miles of shoreline. The most common items encountered were plastic bottles, plastic bags and cigarette butts, but other larger items such as automobile parts, tires and household appliances were also found.
"The Bay and its waterways work for us every single day, boosting our economy and quality of life," commented Tanner Council, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation's Clean the Bay Day coordinator. "Protecting and restoring the Bay requires everyone doing their share to reduce pollution. Clean the Bay Day is a great, practical way for individuals to give a few hours back and make a big difference.
In commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the event, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation presented awards to honor partners who have dedicated the most years to the annual cleanup, including the U.S. Navy and the cities of Chesapeake, Newport News, Hampton, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk and Virginia Beach.
This year the Clean the Bay Foundation noted a decrease in the overall quantity of litter, indicating, they say, that the cleanup sites are seeing sustained improvement.
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