Cleanups, Conversation And Change: Peckville Library, Sierra Club Team Up For Litter Pickups

(The Valley Advantage) The Valley Community Library in Peckville, in conjunction with the Northeast Pennsylvania Sierra Club Group and Keep PA Beautiful, alongside other local partners, has been holding a series of litter cleanups across the region.

The library recently posted the amount of garbage that was picked up in the 10 cleanups so far this year on their Facebook page, and the numbers were shocking.

A total of 123 bags of litter were filled, weighing over 1,062.5 pounds, consisting of 2,041 single-use plastic bottles, 1,733 cigarette butts, 1,385 metal cans, over 821 food wrappers, 806 single-use cups, 760 single-use plastic bags, 421 single-use plastic lids from cups, 405 glass bottles, 88 articles of clothing, 37 balloons, 20 diapers and 11 tires. This does not even include larger items, such as the three TVs and myriad furniture found discarded.

Fawn Contreras, the Valley Community Library’s head of youth services and the Northeast PA Sierra Club’s secretary and outing leader, has been taking charge of the cleanups. Every year, she creates a display board that visualizes the amount of litter they’ve collected and the scope of the problem they are fighting to stave off. This year especially, Contreras hopes to use the cleanups to get people talking about why we litter and how we can make a long-term impact.

“My goal is to promote conversation and to see what gets done,” Contreras said. “It’s also to engage kids with this at an early age.”

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Read about Fawn Contreras who was one of the recipients of the 2023 Affiliate Volunteer of the Year Awards!