Tuesday, September 21, 2021


The American Rescue Plan could provide essential training to boost jobs in construction, and we explore a trauma-informed approach to preventing marijuana use in teens.


Pfizer says its vaccine is safe for children ages 5 to 11, travel restrictions soon will ease for vaccinated international visitors to the U.S., and a Texas doctor who performed an abortion under new restrictions is sued.


Lawsuits stall debt relief for America's Black farmers; Idaho hospitals using "critical care" protocols; grant money boosts rural towns in Utah and more conservation acreage could protect the iconic sage grouse.

Tennesseans Snap Photos of Trash for Litter Awareness Campaign


Friday, July 12, 2019   

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A new campaign aims to raise awareness of Tennessee's trash problem.

Hundreds of people have sent photos of litter in their communities to the Tennessee Wildlife Federation, the group that launched the social media effort.

Studies have found the Tennessee River contains more microplastic per gallon than any other studied river in the world, and the state Department of Transportation estimates around 100 million pieces of litter are scattered along roads.

Mike Butler, chief executive officer of the Tennessee Wildlife Federation, says his organization wants to spur people into noticing the trash that surrounds them.

"We've become kind of numb or blind to how much garbage is just around us all the time,” says Butler. “And so, we thought about, 'Well, if we've been blind, I wonder what other people think?'"

Last year, the Tennessee Valley Authority removed about 230 tons of trash from the Tennessee River. Butler points out that cleanup efforts cost taxpayers around $15 million a year. To participate in the campaign, Tennesseeans can submit photos of litter at 'tnwf.org/litter.'

There are many citizens' groups across the state working to collect cans and debris from roadsides, and pluck plastics out of rivers and lakes. However, Butler says state legislators should be focusing their attention on policies that could rein in the trash problem.

"We do think that there is a policy discussion that needs to take place,” says Butler. “We want to incentivize the right behaviors, to help reduce or lessen the amount of littering that's going on. And two, we need a renewed effort to clean up what's already out there."

According to the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, most of the state's landfills will hit their maximum capacity within the next three decades, while at least nine will be completely full within 10 years.

Disclosure: National Wildlife Federation contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Endangered Species & Wildlife, Energy Policy, Environment, Public Lands/Wilderness, Salmon Recovery, Water. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

get more stories like this via email
Food prices are rising nationwide, and the cost of a grocery store trip is up 3.5% from a year ago, according to a USDA report. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

RALEIGH, N.C. -- More than $1 million in COVID-19 relief grants are helping rural organizations increase their focus on locally sourced food relief…


DES MOINES, Iowa -- This fall, the Iowa Utilities Board is hosting meetings to inform the public about a proposed underground pipeline, which would …

Social Issues

MANDAN, N.D. -- North Dakota has had nearly 18,000 job openings in recent months, with roughly 1,000 in construction. A labor leader in the trades …

Approximately 3% of the 1,500 students in Montgomery County who were screened for behavioral health indicators were found to be at risk of substance use. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

DAYTON, Ohio -- An Ohio county is taking a trauma-informed approach to its work on preventing marijuana use in teens. As marijuana policy changes …

Social Issues

DENVER -- As Congress considers making significant investments in the nation's child-care system, children's advocates say now is the time to make …

This, year the theme of Sea Otter Awareness Week is the species' key role in the mosaic of the ecosystem. (Wikimedia Commons)


MONTEREY BAY, Calif. - This week, conservation groups are celebrating Sea Otter Awareness Week with online and in-person events across the state…


LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Admission to any state park in Nevada is free this coming Saturday, as part of the first Nevada Public Lands Week - with a series …

Social Issues

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A new Redistricting Advisory Council announced last week by Gov. Tom Wolf's office will focus on reducing gerrymandering as new …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021