Twenty volunteers from Osprey, Link and Chain Lakes area participated in the seventh annual roadside cleanup on Saturday May 25, 2014. They picked up garbage on approximately 40 km of roadways, some sections of the Trans-Canada Trail as well as the Osprey and Link Lake Forestry Recreational campsites.
The total weight of the debris clocked in at 410 kg or 900 lbs. The waste was sorted after it was collected. Categories of the litter included items which could be reused, metal, glass, recyclable bottles & cans, clean styrofoam, propane cylinders, plastic and landfill material.
Two members of the cleanup had to clean up an illegal dump site on a very steep embankment using a winch and rope. The items were likely used for a party crowd and included plastic cups, paper plates, remnants of food and plastic utensils. Also at this site were many plastic garbage bags filled with dirt. The soil was dumped and the bags collected for disposal.
The most disappointing part of our cleanup is that no matter how much education we have had, people are still leaving garbage in firepits at the campsites and outside their residences. The bears who have found this food source are no doubt the ones which will have to be destroyed in the future. “A fed bear is a dead bear” is a statement we should all take heed of if we want to preserve nature and our environment.
Finally, cigarette packaging and remnants of the filters are one of the most frequently found items. The butts of cigarettes can be ingested by wildlife, birds, fish or turtles. They can cause choking and death for those unsuspecting creatures. The next time you empty out your vehicle ashtray or toss out a cigarette on the ground consider the consequences for them and for the possibility of causing a forest fire, which can lead to criminal charges.
Many kudos go to all the volunteers and people who care for our earth and keep it safe and clean for all to enjoy. Special thanks go to Norm Christman, Jill Pelland who take the garbage to the landfill and to Lynne Adams who recycles the bottles and cans. We also would like to commend the Town of Princeton for waiving the landfill fees and the Osprey Ratepayers who advertise the event on their website throughout the year.