2012-04-27 / Community

Hundreds Attend Earth Day Cleanups Despite Pouring Rain


Church of God heavy lift team removes a 500 pound timber from the bay marsh. Church of God heavy lift team removes a 500 pound timber from the bay marsh. The American Littoral Society organized three major cleanups during the Earth Day weekend. On Saturday, at Dubos Point in Arverne, 40 people from Bloomberg Company and the Littoral Society removed over 1,000 pounds of debris from the shoreline and planted 500 plugs of Spartina (marsh grass) and 20 beach plum shrubs. At another Jamaica Bay shoreline at Plumb Beach, NYC Audubon brought 75 people to a marsh cleanup and removed plastics and other debris that were impacting the marsh and beachfront.

The biggest event occurred on Sunday, Earth Day when more than 300 dedicated and enthusiastic young people from the Church of God and We Love You Foundation worked for three hours in the pouring rain and removed an amazing 10,000 pounds of floatable debris including old boats, heavy timbers, styrofoam, plastics and bottles that were impacting the fringe marshes at Floyd Bennett Field. Dumpsters and plantings were provided by the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) and debris removal assistance by the National Park Service at Gateway NRA.


It takes a village – or a group of enthusiastic young people – to drag a derelict boat from the shoreline. It takes a village – or a group of enthusiastic young people – to drag a derelict boat from the shoreline. Also on hand were the “dynamic duo” father-son team from the Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers, Dan Mundy Sr. and Jr. They brought a chain saw to cut up larger timbers for easier carrying and assisted with the removal of boats. “I can’t say enough for the volunteers that came out in such numbers on a rainy day to help restore the shorelines of Jamaica Bay,” said Don Riepe, the cleanup organizer. “The Bloomberg Company, Ecowatchers, NYC Audubon and Church of God have sent volunteers for every cleanup over many years and have made a great difference in helping Jamaica Bay. The marshes are now flourishing in areas where tons of debris had covered them.“


Despite the pouring rain, this group of young people maintain their composure and work as a team to remove bags of debris from the beach. Despite the pouring rain, this group of young people maintain their composure and work as a team to remove bags of debris from the beach. The next major cleanups will take place in September at many sites around Jamaica Bay as well as throughout New York City during the New York State Beach Cleanup. For more information contact the American Littoral Society at 718-318-9344; e-mail: donriepe@gmail.com



Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers dynamic duo Dan Mundy Sr. (left) and Dan Jr. cut up heavy timbers for easy removal from shoreline. Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers dynamic duo Dan Mundy Sr. (left) and Dan Jr. cut up heavy timbers for easy removal from shoreline.

Group teamwork by the Church of God volunteers helps remove a heavy derelict boat from the marsh. It’s amazing what a group of dedicated young people can do. Group teamwork by the Church of God volunteers helps remove a heavy derelict boat from the marsh. It’s amazing what a group of dedicated young people can do.

Bloomberg Company sent 30 volunteers to Dubos Point to clean the beach and plant in this new marsh. Plantings were donated by the NYCDEP. Bloomberg Company sent 30 volunteers to Dubos Point to clean the beach and plant in this new marsh. Plantings were donated by the NYCDEP.

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