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Volunteers Collect 70 Tons Of Trash in Sierra Nevada, Sacramento Cleanup Day Events

Great Sierra River Cleanup / Courtesy

Elle Procopio of Foresthill, California, was one of 2,833 volunteers collecting trash in 22 counties Saturday as part of the Great Sierra River Cleanup event.

Great Sierra River Cleanup / Courtesy

The American River Parkway Foundation and the Great Sierra River Cleanup held their annual cleanup events Saturday. 
Thousands of volunteers removed trash and debris from 23 separate locations along the riverbanks and from the river as part of the Great American River Parkway Cleanup. 
American River Parkway Foundation Executive Director Dianna Poggetto says 1,490 volunteers on land, and 60 divers-kayakers, removed 16,500 pounds of trash and 800 pounds of recyclables Saturday. 
She says the "most interesting items" found on the Parkway included a chaise lounge chair, mattresses, riding chaps, HP scanner, propane tanks, barbecues and car batteries.
0919 ARPF Cleanup 1
Some of the trash collected from the American River Parkway Saturday in Sacramento County.  American River Parkway Foundation / Courtesy
The Great Sierra River Cleanup event also removed trash Saturday from waterways throughout the Sierra Nevada. Organizers say 2,833 volunteers collected 61.3 tons of trash and recyclables from throughout the 22-county Sierra Nevada region.
"Unusual items included a plastic dinosaur, old mining machinery, a flip-flop sandal in a crawdad trap and an unopened DVD on the Holy Grail," says Theresa Burgess, Great Sierra River Cleanup Project Coordinator.
The events are part of the annual statewide California Coastal Cleanup Day, which started in 1985.
In 2014, nearly 67,000 volunteers removed more than 1,190,000 pounds of trash and recyclables from California's beaches, lakes, and waterways.

The California Coastal Commission says the top-five items collected between 1989 and 2014 were:
Cigarettes/Cigarette Filters (37.7 percent) 
Food Wrappers/Containers (10.4 percent)
Caps/Lids (8.7 percent)
Bags (paper and plastic) (7.9 percent)
Cups/Plates/Utensils (5.4 percent)

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