Our Efforts

Did you know that the Great Lakes are the biggest freshwater source in the world? Lake Erie is the most productive for fishing of all the Great Lakes. Your support helps make our streams clean, clear and healthy so they can support this complex ecosystem. By donating to PCS, you help us reach our goals of restoring rivers that lead to Lake Erie beaches that promote fishable and swimmable conditions for generations.

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Our Efforts

Our annual programs like Clean Your Streams and Get the Lead Out are all working towards trash-free or marine debris-free waterways. Join our fight against marine debris and become a Partner for clean streams today, whether that means you volunteer, sponsor a program, or make a donation. All are ways you can support our efforts to make our streams, rivers, and lakes clean, clear, and safe. 

PCS2debrisfromisland 2 1Our Executive Director, Kris Patterson, recently authored a blog article describing the work we have completed with support from NOAA's Marine Debris Program. Grant funding from this program has allowed us to expand our Clean Your Streams programing, and the additional work is paying off.

2021 Clean Your Streams 25 Marine Debris Profile

During Clean Your Streams Day and Clean Your Streams 365, volunteers remove litter that would have otherwise polluted the waterways. Every group fills out a data card that tallies exactly what they were finding, where they were finding it, and how many they are finding. Using this data, Partners for Clean Streams is able to submit these findings into the International Coastal Conservancy Database which records global information on marine debris clean-ups. We also share this data and share with local municipalities to aid with their stormwater plans. 

The list of top ten items found across our clean-up sites demonstrates that a significant amount of trash comes from single-use products. This includes items such as food wrappers, cigarette butts, plastic bottles, plastic bags, disposable cups and plates, and aluminum beverage cans. Individuals can have an enormous impact on reducing the amount of these types of waste by making conscious efforts to avoid using products that contain these materials. Some of the easiest ways to reduce your footprint are to use reusable water bottles instead of plastic one-time-use bottles and by utilizing reusable grocery bags instead of disposable plastic grocery bags. Another great way to reduce food packaging is to bring your own containers to your grocery store and buy food from the bulk section. Volunteers find many other unique items that tell a different story about marine debris. Unusual and strange items are found like Powerwheels Jeep, mattresses, street signs, toy kitchens, and many tires. It is important to find the appropriate methods to dispose of such unusual items. Many municipalities and cities hold special trash days where people can dispose of large amounts of trash or larger items. Lucas County provides a number of opportunities for trash disposal, with more information on their website. One of our area partners, Keep Toledo/Lucas County Beautiful, also has numerous resources available for proper trash disposal.  

 

MarineDebris6Graph:PCSLast year's Clean Your Streams Day engaged 971 volunteers in collecting 13,528 pounds of trash over 34 miles of river bank. During the cleanup, volunteers diligently tracked the type of trash that they found. With this information, Partners for Clean Streams is better able to educate people and target future cleanup efforts. The list of top ten items found across cleanup sites in Lucas County demonstrates that a significant amount of trash comes from single use products. This includes items such as food wrappers, cigarette butts, plastic bottles, plastic bags, disposable cups and plates, and aluminum beverage cans. Individuals can make a big impact on protecting streams by recycling or reducing their consumption of products like these. We encourage citizens to take advantage of reusable products as much as possible. To start, buy a reusable water bottle to fill up throughout your day and use reusable grocery bags at the store! Repackaging food bought in bulk is another means for saving money and helping reduce waste.

During Clean Your Streams, volunteers find many other unique items that tell a different story about marine debris. Unique and strange items found in 2015 included spray paint cans, a power drill, coconuts, a table, a wheel barrel, a wooden train whistle, a toaster oven, a bible, 97 baseballs, a wig, and 10 shopping carts, among many other things. It is important to find appropriate ways of disposing of items such as these. Many municipalities and cities hold special trash days where people can dispose of large amounts of trash or large items. Explore the correct way to recycle electronics, yard waste, and household hazardous wastes through your local government. Lucas County provides a number of opportunities for trash disposal, with more information on their website. We look forward to Clean Your Streams Day each year because of the positive impact it has on the environment and our waterways, but also on the volunteers as they witness the sheer amount of marine debris that accumulates in our rivers and experience what it is like to make clean them up. 

Clean Your Streams

Clean Your Streams

652 volunteers participated in the 26th Annual Clean Your Streams Day and collected 13,594.5 pounds of trash from local waterways.Learn more...
Partners for Clean Streams Inc. is striving for abundant open space and a high quality natural environment; adequate floodwater storage capacities and flourishing wildlife; stakeholders who take local ownership in their resources; and rivers, streams and lakes that are clean, clear and safe