Valdosta and Lowndes Co. host ‘Love Your River’ cleanup

Video from WALB
Published: Oct. 28, 2022 at 8:00 PM EDT
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VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - It is estimated that 100 million animals die each year due to water pollution. That’s why Lowndes County, the city of Valdosta and several residents are stepping up to help clean up pollution.

On Friday, the group gathered dozens of bags of trash, trying to make their community cleaner and brighter.

Lowndes County does this at three different locations: the Troupville Boat Ramp, Naylor Boat Ramp and Mozell’s Site Boat Ramp off Hwy-31. The city does it at two locations: VSU/Drexel Park and Sugar Creek at Hightower Circle.

“It is important that we keep our rivers clean. It’s also part of our stormwater MS4 permit, that we hold a community event every year. One of those events is the river clean up,” Chad McLeod, director of engineering services, said.

McLeod says this cleanup is required, but they still enjoy doing it.
McLeod says this cleanup is required, but they still enjoy doing it.(Source: WALB)

They have done this for five years now, and they usually see about 30-40 volunteers each year. At the Troupville Boat Ramp, they have at least 20 volunteers and six to seven volunteers at the others.

“It’s very important for us to partner with our friends in Lowndes County so that we can show the residents here that if you take pride and have ownership of cleaning the rivers, then you take more pride in where you live. And so, it’s very important for us to do this collaboratively all together so that people understand the importance of keeping your neighborhood, keeping your neighborhoods clean, and just taking pride in where you live,” Sharah Denton, city of Valdosta Community Relations and marketing manager, said.

Sharah Denton says this is a great event that they host alongside Lowndes County.
Sharah Denton says this is a great event that they host alongside Lowndes County.(Source: WALB)

This is just one of the community outreach events that they do throughout the year. Moody Air Force Base even sent 10 volunteers out to show that they take pride in keeping their community clean.

“We’re always appreciative of all the volunteers who help clean our multiple sites throughout the city and the county. And the importance of keeping our waterways clean here in Lowndes County,” Meghan Barwick, public information officer for Lowndes County, said.

Barwick says this is just one community outreach event they participate in.
Barwick says this is just one community outreach event they participate in.(Source: WALB)

They say this is an annual event that they enjoy participating in every October.