MillerCoors employees are volunteering with Flint Riverkeeper Friday to remove trash and contribute to the overall health of the Flint River.
The project is part of a month-long effort launched by MillerCoors, involving more than a dozen volunteer initiatives to protect water.
MillerCoors employees pick up more than a dozen garbage bags full of cans and litter from one of the beaches along the Flint River and Lake Chehaw. They call this effort their celebration of Great Water Month.
"Today is one day, that it's sort of a statement, said MillerCoors Albany Brewery Plant Manager Tim Dill. "But this is an everyday thing for our folks."
The Flint River is not only crucial to life in South Georgia, but for the brewery. It's their top ingredient.
"If you'll thin about what makes our beer, you starts with water, said MillerCoors Executive Vice President Fernando Palacios. "Then you add barley. So if you don't have clean water, the rest won't work."
This is the fifth year in a row that MillerCoors employees have volunteered to clean litter from the banks of the Flint River.
"We know we've got special water in Albany," said Dill. "We're very proud of it. It's one of the reasons we are located here. 30 something years ago. And it's part of our responsibility to make sure it's here and available many, many decades to come."
Flint Riverkeeper Gordon Rogers joined in Friday's cleanup effort, saying MillerCoors is the kind of responsible corporate partner that has kept the Flint from being fouled by pollution and litter.
"We're not in that situation in the Flint," said Rogers. "We don't ever want to get there. So the litter itself and keeping a lid on it, is important."
"We live here. We enjoy all the natural resources. So nothing's better than to be able to enjoy the river and make sure that it's clean," said Palacios. "We do our part."
The MillerCoors employees picked up dozens of bags of litter on just one stretch of beach. They hope to set an example for South Georgians, and urge others not to litter in this great natural resource.
Employees in Albany volunteered from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. cleaning up the waterway.
According to a water sustainability report released last week, MillerCoors announced that the company had reduced water usage by a total of 6.1 percent in 2012.