Where’d All Those Butts & Bottles Come From?
October 27, 2010 at 10:44 AM EDT
New Jersey American Water employees hit the beaches last Saturday to join Clean Ocean Action’s second Beach Sweeps of the year. About 60 employees showed up at Ocean City, Bradley Beach and Union Beach, and were issued gloves, trash bags, and inventory sheets. Under the direction of beach captains, they spent the next several hours picking up and separating anything that didn’t belong in the sand.
Cigarette filters quickly became the primary debris picked off the beaches, as hundreds of them were scooped up and stashed in the “non-recyclable” bags carried by the company’s volunteers. “I was amazed how many cigarette butts and plastic bottles there were,” said Deborah Quigley, human resource generalist at the company’s Voorhees’ headquarters. “The next time I’m at the shore, I’ll definitely be more aware of how I get rid of my trash.”
According to Clean Ocean Action, Beach Sweeps volunteers picked up more than 2,300 cigarette filters from the Jersey Shore. One group even collected discarded parking tickets from upstate New York, prompting Clean Ocean Action’s Jennifer Thompson to declare the tickets as proof “that we are all part of a larger eco-system.”
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New Jersey American, a wholly owned subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 2.5 million people. Founded in 1886, American Water is the largest investor-owned U.S. water and wastewater utility company. With headquarters in Voorhees, N.J., the company employs more than 7,000 dedicated professionals who provide drinking water, wastewater and other related services to approximately 16 million people in 35 states, as well as Ontario and Manitoba, Canada. More information can be found by visiting www.amwater.com.
Editor’s Note: Photos of the clean up are available on flikr at http://www.flickr.com/photos/njamwater/sets/72157625245762964/