Blackwood River Clean Up

Published on Thursday, 13 January 2022 at 2:00:00 PM

Blackwood Rive Clean Up

What lies beneath the river that ambles under our namesake bridge? What treasures, or more appropriately, rubbish, lay forgotten below the tannin-dyed murk?

Seonaid Leslie of Transition Bridgetown was determined to find out! After reading an article about SUP Tonic* and their clean-ups with Keep Australia Beautiful in the Swan River she was inspired to bring the initiative to Bridgetown.

Seonaid successfully applied for the Community Litter Grants from Keep Australia Beautiful WA and partnered with the Bridgetown Family & Community Centre to host SUP Tonic and Keep Australia Beautiful community river clean-up with the added angle of enjoying paddle boarding!

The river may glimmer in the summer sun however flooding can bring rubbish and deposit it along the river banks. On the day 10-15 community volunteers and 8 crew members paddled along the river and snapped up litter from the depths with elongated BBQ-like tongs. Their ‘discoveries’ were divided into a series of labelled buckets. These buckets were later weighed for a grand total of 1,381 items at a whopping 113kg. For the fun fact lovers out there, that is the same weight as a baby elephant!

When asked about the day’s most intriguing find, Seonaid said, “It would have to be the suitcase with combination lock. It was unfortunately empty though…” She wanted to reiterate that there is still more work to do, “I was surprised to hear that for a similar-sized area in the Swan River we collected more rubbish here. The river looked quite clean to me! I hope to look into carrying out this initiative in other areas along the catchment.”

Keeping the environment clean can also be fun! If you’d like to get involved in other initiatives to care for the natural environment, please reach out to Transition Bridgetown via email or on their Facebook page.

*SUP Tonic is committed to teaching people stand up paddle boarding and often partners with other community initiatives.

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