Citizens can help beautify Polk County by being part of April’s Spring Litter Sweep and other local clean-up opportunities.
Spring Litter Sweep
The 2021 Spring Litter Sweep is April 10-24. Traditionally scheduled for the last two weeks of April and September, Litter Sweep is the N.C. Department of Transportation’s biannual statewide roadside litter removal initiative.
Residents throughout the state can participate in local efforts to help clean up North Carolina’s roadways. Local NCDOT County Maintenance Offices provide volunteers with clean-up supplies, such as reversible orange/blue trash bags, gloves and orange safety vests. To get involved and pick up these supplies in Polk County, contact the NCDOT Columbus Maintenance Office at 151 Locust St. in Columbus at (828) 894-8980.
In addition to volunteers, NCDOT maintenance crews devote one week of their time to pick up litter and collect orange bags placed on the roadsides by volunteer pick-ups.
‘Columbus Proud’ Litter Awareness Month
Jointly sponsored by the Discover Columbus Committee and the Town of Columbus, “Columbus Proud” Litter Awareness Month kicks off April 3.
“Columbus Proud” Litter Awareness Month is designed to raise awareness about litter while at the same time helping people in the community get their neighborhoods and public areas squared away after a long winter.
The Town of Columbus offers opportunities for families, church groups, clubs, schools, youth and adult organizations, businesses and individuals to collect litter and other debris along their neighborhood streets during the month of April. Orange trash bags, safety vests, and gloves will be available to Columbus residents who wish to participate. Supplies will be available at the Town Hall in Columbus. For more information, contact Daisy at Columbus Town Hall at (828) 894-8236, Ext. 1002.
Conserving Carolina, a nonprofit conservation organization that works to preserve water and land resources in Western North Carolina, also is participating in the North Carolina Litter Sweep program in the Town of Columbus during the month of April. GFL Environmental Inc., which is located in Columbus, is participating, too, with their bright green containers being staged to collect and dispose of litter bagged as part of the Town’s Litter Awareness Month.
MountainTrue’s Socially Distant Lake Adger and Green River Clean-ups
MountainTrue, a nonprofit environmental conservation organization in Western North Carolina, is holding socially distanced clean-ups at Lake Adger and the Green River on Saturday, April 10.
The Lake Adger Spring Cleaning will be held from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., April 10 starting at the Lake Adger Boat Ramp on State Road 1138 in Mill Spring. Additional precautions to keep everyone safe and healthy will be taken, including wearing masks in parking lots and anytime 6 feet of distance can’t be maintained. Volunteers can head out onto the lake at their convenience to collect trash which then can be dropped off no later than 5 p.m. at the NC Wildlife dump truck parked at Lake Adger Marina. Learn more at https://mountaintrue.org/event/socially-distant-lake-adger-spring-cleaning/.
Volunteers also can join MountainTrue’s Green Riverkeeper and Liquidlogic Co-founder Shane Benedict at the 11th Annual Green River Spring Cleaning from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., starting at the Fishtop Access at 2302 Green River Cove Rd. in Saluda. Additional precautions to keep everyone safe and healthy will be taken, including wearing masks in parking lots and anytime 6 feet of distance can’t be maintained; avoiding paddling in large groups; and shuttling with household groups. Trash collected that day can be disposed of in a dumpster at Fishtop. Learn more at https://mountaintrue.org/event/socially-distant-green-river-spring-cleaning/.
Littering North Carolina roadways is illegal and can result in fines for those who commit the offense. Some litterbugs simply need to be informed and reminded that littering – whether deliberate or unintentional – can end with a personal commitment to stop.
The N.C Department of Transportation’s year-round Swat-A-Litterbug Program encourages the public to report people who litter in an effort to help make North Carolina roadways cleaner. The public can report those who litter by contacting NCDOT’s Litter Management Section by filling out an online report or by calling (800) 331-5864.