Next time you visit a state park, you might want to take a closer look at everything being left on the ground. Today, volunteers at the whitewater preserve cleaned-up what they call "microtrash."
Volunteers suited up in plastic gloves and grabbed their "picker-uppers" to tackle trash along the picnic area, the trail system and the river bed of the Whitewater Preserve. One volunteer said they picked up a lot of plastic bottles and cans, along with some other interesting objects.
"Ya know, I found a battery, a zipper, a balloon, a home depot flag... trash," said
Newly retired nurse Allyn Jo Fisk says her new pastime is volunteering.
"I just wanted to get out and do something," Fisk said.
That "something" does a lot of good for both the campers and creatures.
"But also for the wildlife that lives here, the trees that call this place home, for the rivers that flow through this canyon, that's what we're trying to do today, keep this place clean," said Whitewater Park Ranger Lucas.
The main focus of today's clean-up was not on the larger trash, but on the things like a bottle cap and or straws. "Mircotrash" like is just as problematic to the park's ecosystem. Even the smallest pieces of plastic can harm the habitat. That is yet another reason why plastic straws are being banned throughout the country. It's a trend that's starting to reach the Coachella Valley.
On November 14, the Cathedral City council will vote on an ordinance that will ban plastic straws. The ordinance would prevent anyone, whether it's a restaurant or a group that offers drinks at an event, from providing or selling plastic straws.
Rangers at the Whitewater Park say the best policy and only policy for trash at the reserve, if you pack it in, you pack it out.
"Just do your part you know 5 pieces of trash a day on a hike makes a difference," Lucas said.
Noticias en español: Telemundo 15