Kenton County Solid Waste Division, utilizing grant monies, pays approved 501(c)3 organizations $100 per mile to pick up trash off of approved roadways within Kenton County. The Banklick Watershed Council recently completed the program and had the following to say about their experience:
Though working a relatively short stretch of roadway, the group collected more than a dozen bags of litter. The litter consisted mostly of plastic items ranging from grocery bags, food and beverage containers to automobile parts and pieces.
Most surprising to the participants was the abundance of cigarette butts on the ground. The concentration was even more impressive given that, except for the occasional ashtray dump, cigarette butts are generally tossed out one at a time. This observation prompted some questions and a little research. Do smokers assume that the discarded cigarette butts that appear to be paper just go away?
It turns out that the filters are made of plasticized cellulose acetate, which over a long period of time will break down into smaller pieces, but is not biodegradable. Used filters are also considered to be hazardous waste due to the toxic components including heavy metals. “If it’s on the ground, it’s in the water.”
It is a little disheartening to know that, after the work of a cleanup like the one we just completed, the problem of litter continues for now. So we are looking forward to another cleanup while hoping that in the near future “pickings are slim.”
- Larry Zembrodt
Spots are still available for interested federally-recognized 501(c)3, non-profit groups. Funds are limited each year and the program is first come, first serve. Applicants must have all proper paperwork completed and approved before beginning the program each year by Kenton County Solid Waste Management. This program runs from April 1st through September 30th each year.
To apply to participate in the program, please visit the Kenton County website. Questions? Please contact Kenton County Public Works Solid Waste Management at (859) 392-1919 or via email.