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Report: Rouge Rescue Volunteers Remove 17,000 Gallons of Trash from River

Friends of the Rouge released their annual report on the Rouge Rescue this week.

A report released this week by Dearborn-based nonprofit shows the results of work done by volunteers during this June's Rouge Rescue.

The Rouge Rescue is an annual river clean up event organized by the non-profit organization. This past May and June, 1,759 volunteers worked to clean and restore the Rouge River at 41 work sites in Detroit and 21 metro Detroit suburbs. 

The report summarizes the volunteer accomplishments during the event and provides details of the work completed at each site.

Highlights from the Rouge Rescue

A great deal of work was accomplished by volunteers, according to Friends of the Rouge.

Trends over the past five years reveal less trash for volunteers to remove and an increase in restoration projects, such as invasive plant removal and native plantings. FOTR shared in a statement that restoration projects are especially important, as they have long term impacts and will help to improve water quality in the river.

Here's a look at the overall and Dearborn stats for the 2012 Rouge Rescue:

  • The event was coordinated by Ryan Warneck and Boy Scout Troop 1104
  • Nine volunteers participated
  • A total of .6 cubic yards of trash were removed from a quarter-mile section of the river

Ford Field Greenway Trail

  • The event was coordinated by Thomas Trimble of
  • 21 volunteers participated
  • A total of .9 cubic yards of trash were removed from a two-acre area

Garlic Mustard Pull Together

  • The event was coordinated by Martha Gruelle, Lakeplain Cluster Stewardship Network; Karen Marzonie, Henry Ford Estate; and Rick Simek, University of Michigan-Dearborn Environmental Interpretive Center
  • 47 volunteers participated
  • A total of 14.9 cubic yards of garlic mustard and dame’s rocket were removed

  • The event was coordinated by Sam Greco, HFCC
  • 47 volunteers participated
  • A total of 20.7 cubic yards of garlic mustard, honeysuckle, and buckthorn were removed
  • The group planted 64 native flowers, and cleared debris along the trail and edge of bluff

  • The event was coordinated by Sydney Parmenter, Environmental Health & Safety and Emergency Management; and Rick Simek, Environmental Interpretive Center
  • 18 volunteers participated
  • A total of 40 invasive honeysuckle shrubs were removed

Overall

  • 85 cubic yards of trash were removed from the river and surrounding floodplain. That's equivilant to 17,160 gallons, and included 29 tires, 9 shopping carts, 11 large household items including mattresses, sofas, recliners and more.
  • Two vehicles were removed from the River in Detroit’s Eliza Howell Park by volunteers from Aristeo Construction.
  • Volunteers also worked to remove 198 cubic yards of invasive plants.
  • 3,960 native wildflowers and grasses and 60 trees and shrubs were planted to reduce the impact of rainwater, such as streambank erosion and pollution carried to the river through storm sewers.

Learn more about Friends of the Rouge and other volunteer opportunities at www.therouge.org, including the 2013 Rouge Rescue, planned for June 1.

Jenna August 29, 2012 at 01:21 PM
This is great! How can others get involved next year?
me August 29, 2012 at 01:47 PM
It appears you can visit www.therouge.org to learn more about Friends of the Rouge and other volunteer opportunities, including the 2013 Rouge Rescue, planned for June 1. :)

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