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NWP Global Registry of Apprentice Ecologists - Riverbank Park, Newark, New Jersey, USA

Riverbank Park, Newark, New Jersey, USA
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Registered: February 2007
Posts: 1
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Today, the Passaic River is one of the most polluted rivers in the state of New Jersey. In the past decades, industrial pollution caused most of the problems the river is dealing with; however, pollution produced by humans is now plaguing the banks of the river. People in the surrounding areas are joining industrial facilities in polluting their own river by dumping household garbage on different sites of the river’s banks.

Ever since the industrial revolution, the Passaic River has served as a dumping ground for chemicals, paint, petroleum refineries and other industrial facilities. High concentrations of these pollutants have caused extreme contamination of the river that negatively affects the fish population and other wildlife living in this ecosystem. In the recent years, the banks have begun to fill with bottles, bags, shoes and tires. When the tide begins to come in, more garbage is deposited on the banks. The amounts of garbage make it impossible for wildlife to safely inhabit and feed in these areas.

Due to this, various volunteers from New Jersey Community Water Watch got together to pick up litter from the banks of the Passaic River. Walking down onto the bank, the problem is clear since garbage is deposited everywhere. As soon as we saw this, we began to pick up garbage. It seemed that as we collected the garbage, more of it was being swept by the tide onto the banks. After three hours, we stopped and looked at what we had been able to do and were proud that we had made a difference. The bank, although not completely free of debris, was much cleaner and safer for anyone who walked down to see the river. Apart from being proud, we were also glad because we were saving the lives of many birds that feed in the river.

The Passaic River has to be kept clean because it is part of the community. Without the Passaic River, kayaking and other water activities would not occur. People would not have a beautiful scenery to look into every morning. Most importantly, many birds and mammals would not have a place to grow and live. It is extremely important to keep the river clean by conducting regular clean ups in the area. Outreach activities that inform the public about the state of the Passaic River is also crucial. Many people in the surrounding community were oblivious to what was happening to the river. It is important to first educate others about the state of the river, so that they could become involved with cleaning the river. Only though programs like the Apprentice Ecologist Initiative and New Jersey Community Water Watch, change can be accomplished in the way people view the river and what they are willing to do to improve it.
· Date: February 9, 2007 · Views: 18375 · File size: 34.3kb, 54.8kb · : 385 x 289 ·
Hours Volunteered: 55
Volunteers: 11
Authors Age & Age Range of Volunteers: 16 to 38
Area Restored for Native Wildlife (hectares): 3
Trash Removed/Recycled from Environment (kg): 110
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