Oceans are filled with millions of tons of plastic. A 2021 study estimated that 80% of it was carried there by rivers. While many ocean-cleaning efforts have focused on trash that’s already made it to the high seas, river cleanups offer a way to intervene sooner.
When a plastic bag is swept down a storm drain, its final destination could be the Ocean. After flowing into a local waterway, it can wash out to a larger waterway and beyond.
Every bag of trash pulled from the river is one that doesn’t end up in the bay. River cleanups and trash-trapping tech such as the Aquarius Systems Aquatic Debris Skimmer are helpful, but the root cause of the debris problem, which is the continued flow of single-use plastics into waterways, still needs to be addressed.