You may have heard that we’ve thrown the gauntlet. We challenge each Virginian to accept our #OneBagofTrashVa Challenge! It’s much like the Ice Bucket Challenge, and you can learn more about it here. We’ve already had a few of you step up, and we saw tons of volunteers doing their part at the Richmond Folk Festival (We were there. It was muddy. We handed out lots of pocket ashtrays, the music was phenomenal, and the volunteers extraordinary). One of the first to step up to the plate was our Governor, Terry McAuliffe and our First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe. The First Lady is no stranger to our cleanups, but it was nice to see the Governor do his part.
Our Executive Director, Michael Baum, recently returned from a trip to Virginia State University. They were a Thirty in 30 Grant winner, and coupled with a grant from Home Depot, they’re making some cool environmental changes to their campus. We’ll let them explain:
“Our project enlisted student, faculty and staff volunteers to conduct a service day that will remove cigarette litter, trash and contaminants from campus storm drainage structures. The desire is to educate students and staff on basic stormwater management, and demonstrate the cumulative effect on water quality of discarding litter, particularly discarded cigarettes. Over the past 5 years, 19 small bio-retention storm water structures called filterras were installed on campus. Storm runoff water passes through the filterra and is treated before being discharged into streams and rivers surrounding campus. Because discarded cigarettes are lightweight and easily conveyed by surface runoff, they collect in abundance in these structures reducing their capacity to filter contaminants and improve water quality. Each of the filterras will undergo inspection, removal of cigarette litter and other debris, and mulch replacement. The result will be 19 fully functioning bio-retention structures operating at design efficiency.”
So – improved water quality, a healthier Chesapeake Bay, and another volley in our war on cigarette litter. Very nice.
And a reminder – now is the time to register for Shiver in the River. It’s not until January 28th, but registering early will net you a chance to win a nifty Early Bird package. There’s plenty of space and plenty to do. And there’s certainly room if you wish to help sponsor Central Virginia’s Coolest Winter Festival.