Three bags of trash, a chair, a bike lock, a key band, a puppet head, a shopping cart, a sock, a scarf, paper, loads of beer cans, bottles, cigarettes and a lot of fun was the result of two and a half hours of cleaning up along the river in Innsbruck.
At 8 am, we met up with a group of people from an organization called GEA (Group for Ecological Action, www.gea.or.at) who shared a part of the river with us. Unfortunately, the “us” was just three people (Diana, Marie-Sophie and Sophia) because the other three who planned to come were ill. Still, we were motivated to collect all the trash along the Inn. We got gloves, bags and pliers and off we went. We were lucky to have a route with not that much garbage, but nevertheless we collected three full bags. All in all, we walked 400m on one side of the river.
There were many other people doing the other riverbank and it was great to know that we were not alone. We were quite shocked how many beer cans and alcohol bottles we found. Our part was the local student’s favorite place to party…
When we were finished, we tore the bags and the shopping cart up the wall to the bike lane where they were picked up later. We got on our bikes and cycled to a living home for elderly people where we were invited to have a traditional Austrian lunch: schnitzel with potato salad. This was also a good opportunity to talk to other volunteers and the organizers who were very pleased with the result.
The event was organized by the city and many clubs joined in, Pangaea being one of them. In total, 195 volunteers (individuals and 17 organizations) collected 750 bags (à 70 liters) of trash at the clean-up which covered 30km in the town area. The main goal was to prevent flood waters, but nature conservation was an important reason for it too.
Some more facts:
3.500 kg of trash was collected, including
25 shopping carts
- 1 freezer
4 computer screens
4 car tires
3 Christmas trees
- 650 kg household-scrap (chairs, barbecue, pots,…) and other metal stuff
550 kg packaging made out of metal (cans), plastic, cartons, paper and glass bottles
- 1.450 kg household waste and bulky waste (things that can’t be recycled, e.g. diapers, textiles, carpets, towels, toys, suitcases, furniture, mattresses…)
- Date: 24th March 2012
- Location: Innsbruck, Austria
- YEPs involved: Marie-Sophie Lenz, Diana Paul, Sophia Paul