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DNREC Secretary invites volunteers to help clean up the Christina River

Contact: Melanie Rapp, Public Affairs, 302-739-9902.
DNREC Secretary invites volunteers to help clean up the Christina River

NEW CASTLE COUNTY (April 8, 2011) – Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Collin O’Mara encourages volunteers to join the clean-up efforts along the Christina River and several of its tributaries on Saturday, April 16 from 8 a.m. until noon. Volunteers are asked to register to work at one of 10 sites throughout northern New Castle County, from north Wilmington to just south of Newark.
“Helping to beautify our waterways is the perfect way to spend a few hours on a Saturday morning,” said Secretary O’Mara. “Clearing debris from the Christina watershed not only improves the landscape for residents and visitors to enjoy, it improves the health and water quality of the river and its tributaries, the primary sources of public water supply for New Castle County.”
For a list of cleanup sites with directions and to register, visit or call 302-838-1897.  Registration is encouraged before April 14, so adequate supplies can be provided to each site captain. Due to insurance requirements, volunteers under the age of sixteen must have adult supervision.

The annual cleanup, now in its 20th year, will be held rain or shine. Since the cleanup began in 1992, more than 350 tons of tires, appliances, household items, and plastic and styrofoam have been cleared from the Christina River, White Clay Creek and various other tributaries.
DNREC has been a sponsor and an integral part of the Christina River Watershed Cleanup since its inception, providing funding and other support.  Specifically, DNREC’s Division of Fish and Wildlife provides staff, boats, and specialized equipment to move volunteers and remove trash from remote locations.  The cleanup of the river within the city of Wilmington benefits the Division’s ongoing marsh restoration work at the Russell W. Peterson Urban Wildlife Refuge.
Experience has shown that it is advisable for participants to consider wearing brightly-colored clothing, long sleeves and pants, boots or water-resistant shoes, hats and heavy-duty gloves and using insect repellent and sunscreen. Waders or hip boots are also useful for the city of Wilmington and Churchman’s Marsh - Christiana and Newport sites.  Additional jon-boat-type work boats are still needed for Wilmington’s Riverfront and East 7th Street locations, as well as the Churchman’s Marsh areas. All participants must wear a life jacket while on any boat.
All volunteers will receive a 2011 Christina River Watershed Cleanup t-shirt designed by Brendan Delaney, a junior, who attends Cab Calloway School of the Arts in Wilmington.

 More than fifty organizations and businesses sponsor the cleanup each year.  Primary sponsors besides DNREC include: Christina Conservancy, Inc.; Partnership for the Delaware Estuary; New Castle County; DuPont Environmental Education Center; Artesian Water Company; United Water Delaware; Noramco, Inc.; FCC Environmental; GE Ceramic Composite Products and Dow Chemical.

For more information on DNREC’s programs, visit our website,
Vol. 41, No. 142