Cleaning up local streams for Earth Day

Attendees will clean post-flood litter on land around rivers



“I think it really does help with that personal investment of realizing what actually gets in our streams,”Jodi Prout said.

LAUREN ELLENBECKER, Evergreen reporter

Residents in Pullman can walk along streams and clear litter from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.

Jodi Prout, education and outreach coordinator for the Palouse Conservation District, said the 15th Annual Pullman Stream Clean-Up helps people become more environmentally conscious by recognizing changes that happen in their community.

“I think it really does help with that personal investment of realizing what actually gets in our streams,” she said.

Shilo Sprouse, Pullman Stormwater Services program manager, said the most common litter found near streams are fast-food wrappers, cigarette butts and small auto pieces. Larger items like scooters and bicycles that were thrown in the stream may also be found.

Prout said streams have become cleaner over the years, but the recent flood carried in more litter and debris that may have settled on land surrounding the streams.

Volunteers will meet at Spring Street Park and take a bus to cleanup sites at Missouri Flat Creek, Paradise Creek and South Fork Palouse River, she said.

PCD will provide gloves and bags for volunteers, Prout said, and participants need to dress for the weather.

The participants will pick up litter at the designated sites as they walk along Pullman’s streams back to Spring Street Park. After the cleanup, there will be a free lunch for volunteers, she said.

Prout said this event is an opportunity for community members to give back to their environment and invest in the area. Participants can spend this time building a relationship with the surrounding natural area, she said.

Sprouse said participants learn more about Pullman’s streams during this event.

“[They learn] it’s not just a roadside ditch — it has a name,” he said. “There is more engagement and appreciation when you know the name.”

The event has received support from Pullman businesses like Pullman Sun Rental Center, Les Schwab Tire Center, and Cafe Moro, Sprouse said. The stormwater services and PCD are expecting over 200 volunteers to participate.

Those who want to participate in the stream cleanup can register on PCD’s website by 8 p.m. Friday.