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More than 200 volunteers joined the Ouachita Green Water Sweep

A lot of plastic items were found.
A lot of plastic items were found.(KNOE)
Published: Sep. 18, 2021 at 5:38 PM CDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - Ouachita Green Water Sweep shines a light on the importance of keeping the river clean. Leaders in Louisiana’s Twin cities have a lot of plans for the Ouachita River, but they say those dreams are often dampened by the trash that flows from the streets and drainage canals.

“It affects not only the aesthetic value if affects the cleanliness of the river, our fish, our birds, and all of our wildlife,” said Staci Mitchell, the West Monroe Mayor.

The Mayor got her hands dirty to help keep it clean and found things that simply shouldn’t be there.

“We found a lot of plastic bottles a lot of plastic ice bags, trash bags. We found some clothing articles,” she said.

Ouachita Green Director Audi Brown says last year volunteers removed about 9,000 pounds of trash from along the river.

“If those things end up in the river they can cause issues. They can cause blockages, so we want to make sure we get it before it gets this far or any further down the waterways and cause any more issues,” she said.

More than 200 hundred volunteers pitched in to help make this event a success.

“When we do things like this we need to get out and support it and get busy. I’m one of those that feels like you can’t grip, complain and wine if you’re not getting out and doing something about it” said Kevo Meredith, a Volunteer.

Monroe Mayor Friday Ellis says there’s an environmental and economic benefit to keeping the river trash free.

“West Monroe and Monroe have the opportunity now that we’re going to plan on building Marina’s and whenever we have people up and down these rivers, it’s best that we keep it clean and beautiful just like everything else,” he said.

He encourages residents to continue making sure the area remains clean.

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