Jack Z. Smith Special Projects Reporter Fort Worth Business Press
It’s an appallingly common sight–the beauty of North Texas creeks, rivers and lakes marred by unsightly and nasty litter in their waters. Most of that litter — an estimated 80 percent– actually started out on land, according to the Tarrant Regional Water District, which operates four reservoirs that provide water for much of this area.
The TRWD and the cities of Fort Worth, Arlington, Mansfield, Denton and Dallas are combining forces to tackle the problem. Theyre cranking up a “Reverse Litter” campaign this week with television and radio advertisements calling on North Texans to take a “Ten on Tuesday” pledge to help reduce litter that ends up in our precious water sources. “We want North Texans to commit to picking up at least 10 pieces of trash on Tuesdays, whether that’s cleaning out loose trash in their vehicles or picking up litter on their walk into the office or whatever is the easiest way to participate,” TRWD Communications Manager Chad Lorance said.
You can make the Ten on Tuesday pledge by signing up at www.reverselitter.com. Or you can join on Facebook at facebook.com/ReverseLitter. “If we can get 5,000 people to go online and take the pledge, we could eliminate 2.6 million pieces of trash each year that would eventually reach our waterways,” Lorance said. The TRWD , based in Fort Worth, is the chief supplier of raw water to Tarrant County. Cleaning up litter costs Metroplex cities an estimated $23 million a year, the agency said.
In a typical situation, rainfall washes litter into a storm drain, which carries it into creeks and rivers that then transmit it into area reservorirs that are the primary source of water we drink. Representatives of the Reverse Litter campaign also will attend area festivals and other events to sign up more people to take the “Ten on Tuesday” pledge. The campaign also is planning an education program to encourage young people to reduce littering.