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Clinch River Cleanup

This is the official site for information about the effort and will be updated on a regular basis as the project progresses.

We are pleased to announce that with assistance from Tennessee Valley Authority, we have created a brand new position this year: River Maintenance Steward. We welcome Bryona Ward, 2019 Clinch river StreamSweeper and current Steward to the Clinch. This position is essential to maintaining the work we have done all summer. The Steward will visit boat launches and periodically float the 13.2 miles of Clinch we covered in 2019. She will engage with river enthusiasts about the work being done by StreamSweepers and the importance of thoughtful recreation.

The first of three seasons of the Clinch river cleanup to comprehensively remove large and small junk from the river has concluded. The teams used methods developed by StreamSweepers in the Rappahannock Rivers Basin Cleanup Campaign (2012-2018) to safely and effectively remove trash while not disrupting mussel habitats. A team of 6-9 local, young people worked from June to August to remove 1006 tires and over 14,000 pounds of trash including appliances, electronics, home furnishings, shopping carts, textiles, and more.

Click here to see our progress map for the first season of Clinch cleanup. Green sections are marked as completed – click any segment to see the number of tires removed.

Thanks to the following agencies and organizations for their time, talent, and many varieties of support.

Russell County, Virginia

The Town of St. Paul, Virginia

The Nature Conservancy

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries

Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation

Appalachian Detention Center

Dominion Energy

Appalachian Electric Power

Tennessee Valley Authority

Clinch River Valley Initiative

Upper Tennessee Roundtable

Mountain Heritage

Keep Southwest Virginia Beautiful

Clinch River Valley Initiative

Friends of Southwest Virginia

and the many landowners of the Clinch River Valley

Clinch River Trash
1000s of tires and appliances in the river
The Clinch River is one of the most beautiful rivers in the mid-Atlantic region

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