PRIDE and Forest Service partner with Clay County to remove dumpsSeptember 21, 2011 by clackey
Sept. 17, 2011, marked the beginning of the end for five illegal dumps in the Daniel Boone National Forest near Manchester, thanks to a partnership between PRIDE, the U.S. Forest Service’s Redbird Ranger District and Clay County Fiscal Court.
The Forest Service awarded a grant to PRIDE to manage the project and dispose of the trash removed from the dumps. The Forest Service and PRIDE are contributing in-kind services, staff time and expertise to the project. The fiscal court will provide the equipment and inmate labor.
The dumps — which are located on Bar Creek Road and Big Double Road — pollute Bar Creek, a tributary to the Red Bird River. They contain tons of household garbage, tires, appliances and construction materials.
More than 36 tons of trash were removed from the first dump Sept. 17. Removing the remaining dumps is expected to take one to two days each and will continue into the fall.
“Eastern Kentucky is blessed with abundant streams and a beautiful natural environment, and this is especially true of the Red Bird River watershed that runs through Clay and Leslie counties,” said District Ranger Thomas Dozier of the Redbird Ranger District.
“Keeping our watersheds clean and free of litter contributes to the quality of life for the people who live here, and it also helps attract business, tourism and economic development to the area,” said Dozier.
He added, “We want to work in close partnership with our local community because we share their vision of living and working in a clean, healthy environment.”
“We appreciate the chance to work with the Forest Service and fiscal court on this environmental restoration project,” said PRIDE’s Tammie Wilson. “It has been our privilege to partner with communities to clean up 2,869 illegal dumps since 1997, and we are ready to put that experience to work here.”
“Our partnership is off to a great start,” said Judge-Executive Joe Asher. “We’re starting with this small dump, so we can get organized, and then we’ll move on to the bigger dumps.”
“We will be inviting volunteers to help clean up some of the dumps later this fall,” Asher added. “We will advertise those cleanups on the radio and in the newspaper, so please be ready to volunteer.”
Citizens can play a big role in preventing illegal dumping in the future, according to all the partners.
“We’re trying to help people understand about how much garbage hurts our county,” Asher said. “There’s not a large percentage of our citizens who do it, but some people still throw out their garbage along roads and out-of-the-way spots. We want to stop it.”
Asher and Reid also urged Clay County residents to sign up for garbage pick-up service to prevent dumping. To learn more, call Reid’s office at 606-598-1281.
The Daniel Boone National Forest, which was established in 1937, encompasses nearly 708,000 acres across 21 counties in Kentucky with a landscape characterized by steep forested ridges dissected by narrow ravines and nearly 3,500 miles of sandstone cliffs. Within that area, the Redbird Ranger District covers 145,850 acres in Clay, Leslie, Owsley, Perry, Harlan and Bell Counties.
PRIDE is a nonprofit organization that promotes “Personal Responsibility In a Desirable Environment” in 38 counties of southern and eastern Kentucky. PRIDE encourages and assists communities with environmental cleanup and education efforts.