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Marine Debris Clean Up September 9-11, 2019

Staff from the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership spent three days in early September cleaning up medium-sized debris from the shoreline of Sauvie Island and Multnomah Channel.

A lovely morning and empty dumpsters await the clean up.

We selected this stretch of river because our previous surveys found a high concentration of debris, so we knew we could have an impact there.

Chris pries a tire from the mud.

Our clean up was boat and barge-based, in order to reach areas of the river inaccessible by car or foot. We focused on picking up materials that are too large for volunteers or good Samaritans, like tires, tarps, and large chunks of Styrofoam.

Our most common find was car and truck tires. There is a distressing number of tires on the shoreline, and we know that there are more under the water. Over these three days, we pried more than 200 tires up from the mud!

Non-tire junk was also gathered.
Tarps (and everything else) get really heavy with mud!
Large blocks of Styrofoam was a common find.
So much polystyrene!

Styrofoam was taken to Agilyx in Tigard, who were eager to work on techniques to dry it sufficiently for it to be recycled.

Thanks, Agilyx!

And all those tires?

So many tires!

In total, we collected around 150 car tires and 60 truck tires. The car tires were taken to Columbia Recycling for recycling, and Tire Disposal & Recycling, Inc. took the truck tires.

Thanks to our amazing clean up team!

Thanks to groups that made the clean up possible: Oregon Department of State Lands for funding, Diversified Marine for assistance, and Portland Disposal & Recyling for drop boxes!

Oregon Department of State LandsDiversified MarinePortland Disposal & Recycling