An environmental group says volunteers hauled nearly 1,600 pounds of trash from the shores of Lake Tahoe following July 4th celebrations.
This was the fourth annual post-July 4th beach cleanup organized by the League to Save Lake Tahoe. Jesse Patterson with the league says many of the volunteers who took part go through mixed emotions.
"People are a little disappointed to see so much trash," says Patterson. "But once you kind of get around the idea of 'man, I wish there wasn't so much trash on the beach,' people really rally around the cry of 'let's keep Tahoe blue.'"
The most commonly found items were single-use plastics, like straws and bottle caps, and cigarette butts. Patterson says the league has identified hot spots where cigarette butt litter is a major problem and has come up with a solution:
"Which are these very attractive disposable canisters that we're partnering with land managers to install at hot spots that have information on the impacts to the environment," says Patterson.
He says 330 volunteers took part.
"That is actually way up," says Patterson. "Last year we had just under 300. So in the four years we've done the event it's gotten bigger each and every year. And now we actually have people reaching out to us before the 4th of July saying they want to sign up for the 5th of July cleanup afterwards."
Four-and-a-half miles of shoreline along nine Tahoe beaches were cleaned Tuesday.