Very proud of my friend Scott Surovell for leading on this. Now, we need stronger environmental protection laws in Virginia.
SENATOR SCOTT SUROVELL AND FRIENDS OF LITTLE HUNTING CREEK REMOVE SHOPPING CARTS, MERRY-GO-ROUND AND WASHING MACHINE FROM LOCAL WATERSHED
Mount Vernon, VA – This past weekend, Senator Scott Surovell (D-36) held his 2017 Little Hunting Creek Cleanup near U.S. 1 in Lee District. Dubbed “Fairfax County’s Trashiest Stream” in 2007 by Fairfax County Government, the stream is a large collector of trash, litter, and foreign objects.
Little Hunting Creek’s trashiest section runs through the Lee District area of Fairfax County in the Route 1 Corridor before it crosses Route 1 and passes George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate.
In coordination with the Friends of Little Hunting Creek, Senator Surovell hosted three different cleanup sites in the Hybla Valley area at Janna Lee Avenue Bridge, Mount Vernon Shopping Plaza behind the Shoppers Food Warehouse and Creekside Village Apartments.
Over 45 volunteers turned out to collect over 1,775 pounds of trash in 125 trash bags. This adds up to over 11,000 pounds of trash collected since Senator Scott Surovell, with help from the Friends of Little Hunting Creek and the Alice Ferguson Foundation, began organizing the annual event six years ago. Volunteers picked up thousands of beverages containers, thousands of plastic bags and other types of trash.
This year’s trove of items included the usual assortment of odd items including:
- Twelve Shopping Carts
- Eight Bikes
- Seven car tires
- Three Trash Cans
- Three Chairs
- Two Doors
- One Mattress
- One Merry-go-round
- Three dozen basketball and soccer balls
- Two Child’s Car Seats
- One Broken Crutch
- One Kiddie Pool
- One Washing Machine
- One Toy Car
- One Tool Chest
- One CD Rack
- One Kitchen Knife
- Portable Safe
- Nerf Guns
Pictures of the trash are attached to this release and can be found and/or downloaded on Senator Surovell’s Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/Surovell.
With the annual assistance of Robert O’Hanlon’s Tree Service, cleanup volunteers were also able to extract 12 grocery carts, bringing the overall total to 208 shopping carts pulled from this watershed in the past six years. The shopping carts extracted this weekend were from Costco, Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond, and PetSmart. These carts, along with other large items, led to a build-up of trash in the stream and impeded water flow.
Volunteers included students from West Potomac and Mt. Vernon High Schools, Carl Sandburg Middle School, Waynewood and Fort Hunt Elementary Schools, and teachers from Walt Whitman Intermediate School. Volunteers also came from as far away as Arlington County.
After two years of work, Robert O’Hanlon and his crew were also successful in removing a large, steel merry-go-round that was disposed in the woods by Stony Brook Apartments on Buckman Road. By using a blow torch, O’Hanlon and his team were able to slice up the 500-pound metal merry-go-round and dispose of it piece-by-piece. Last year, O’Hanlon and his team removed a 600-pound metal play set from the same location. Stony Brook has refused to take responsibility for the issue.
Senator Surovell stated, “I am grateful for the numerous volunteers that gave up their Saturday to help clean up their community. Little Hunting Creek is still full of trash, but if we can remove a ton of trash one weekend, that’s a ton of trash that does not make it to the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay. I am disappointed Route 1’s retailers continue to show a lack of interest in controlling shopping cart removal, minimizing plastic bag consumption, or disposable containers in the corridor. We are also continuing to raise awareness about the Lee District trash and litter problem in Hybla Valley. If we continue this message, we will hopefully eventually see a reduction in plastic bottle, bag and overall waste in our streams. This work would not be possible without the help of all of our volunteers this weekend.”