Illegal Dumping Continues on Aquidneck Island

Volunteers recently removed more than 1,500 pieces of debris from Weaver Cover in Portsmouth, R.I. (Clean Ocean Access)

Volunteers recently removed more than 1,500 pieces of debris from Weaver Cover in Portsmouth, R.I. (Clean Ocean Access)

By ecoRI News staff

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — Clean Ocean Access recently performed a coastal cleanup at Weaver Cove, where 11 volunteers removed 1,248 pounds of debris.

Of the 1,556 items removed, cigarette butts remained the highest count, with 638 found along the boat ramp and shoreline. Large amount of plastic bags and plastic bottles also were collected.

“The most discouraging part of this event was the illegal dumping that continues along the beautiful shoreline of Portsmouth,” said Dave McLaughlin, executive director of Clean Ocean Access.

He noted the four flat-screen TVs, a six-channel amplifier, a sink garbage disposal, a mattress, a huge panel of broken glass and the two tires collected during the Jan. 9 cleanup.

“We thoroughly cleaned this exact area on October 18, 2014, so this stuff was illegally dumped since that time,” McLaughlin said. “We support increased environmental enforcement, but we are likely dealing with a few rotten people and hopefully bringing this awareness will prevent it from happening in the future.”

The Clean Ocean Access “Marine Debris Solutions Lifecycle Project” is a community-based data-driven program with three phases and project goals that include marine debris assessment, removal, prevention, and promoting long-lasting stewardship.