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Great Sierra River Cleanup event set for September 20th
(Auburn) – Low water levels due to the drought won’t stop an estimated 4,000 volunteers from heading out on Saturday, September 20, to clean up Sierra rivers, lakes, and streams as part of the sixth annual Great Sierra River Cleanup sponsored by the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC).
Record low snowpack and the resulting low water levels throughout the Sierra won’t deter community groups across the 22-county Sierra Nevada Region from removing appliances, beverage cans, baby diapers, tires, furniture, shopping carts, and plastic items from the rivers and streams that supply more than 60 percent of California’s water. California’s water future has been a major topic of discussion for many California leaders this year, and sixteen members of the state Legislature have signed on as co-chairs of the Great Sierra River Cleanup to demonstrate their support for clean water.
“The Great Sierra River Cleanup is a great way for people to get involved and to help protect the health of the water source that we all rely on,” says SNC Assistant Executive Officer Joan Keegan.
Over the last five years, nearly 19,000 volunteers have joined together to pull more than 600 tons of trash and recyclables from watersheds throughout the Sierra Nevada. This effort, in partnership with the California Coastal Cleanup Day, serves to promote good stewardship on all California waterways, from the source to the sea.
Most cleanup events run from 9 a.m. until noon, and involve picking up litter along the shorelines. There are opportunities for people of all ages. To get involved, volunteers can visit www.SierraNevada.ca.gov to find a cleanup location. Everyone is encouraged to pre-register for their cleanup site by contacting the site coordinator listed.
The Great Sierra River Cleanup would not be possible without the hard work of thousands of volunteers, dozens of local community groups, and the following supporters: the California Coastal Commission, the California Conservation Corps, Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, Camp-California, California Ski Industry Association, YubaNet.com, SMUD, Sierra Pacific Industries, Sierra Heritage Magazine, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and Adventure Sports Journal.
Created in 2004, the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) is a state agency whose mission is to improve the environmental, economic, and social well-being of the Sierra Nevada Region. The SNC has awarded over $50 million in grants for projects to protect and enhance the health of California’s primary watersheds by improving forest health, remediating mercury contamination from abandoned mines, protecting critical natural resources and reducing the risk of catastrophic wildfire. Funding for these projects comes from Proposition 84 passed by voters in 2006.
The Sierra Nevada Region spans 25 million acres, encompasses all or part of 22 counties, and runs from the Oregon border on the north, to Kern County on the south.