OUR VIEW: Gwinnett answers the challenge of the Great American Cleanup

The results are in from this year’s Great American Cleanup — Gwinnett Challenge and the numbers are impressive. In the 15th year of the event, which is put on by Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful and is part of the Keep America Beautiful campaign, Gwinnettians again rose to the occassion.

“We are humbled by the show of support from the local community for this year’s Great American Cleanup – Gwinnett Challenge,” said Connie Wiggins, Executive Director for Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful. “It is truly inspiring to see the ingenuity of and variety in the project submissions we received from participants. Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful wishes to extend our sincere gratitude to the people of Gwinnett for working together to make a difference for our environment.”

During the three-month environmentally focused campaign, local Great American Cleanup participants:

• Collected more than 6 million pounds of recyclables. To put that in perspective, that amount is enough to fill the recycling bins at 200,000 homes.

• Cleaned and beautified 178 miles of roadway throughout the county.

• Removed nearly 22,000 pounds of litter, an amount that would fill 1,093 large trash bags and span the half mile from the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center to the Historic Courthouse in downtown Lawrenceville.

• Collected 1,439 books to donate to local and international charities.

• Removed more than a ton of litter from Bromolow Creek in Duluth.

• Built a new community playground.

We’re proud to say that this year the Daily Post newsroom got in on the act, starting a recycling drive that netted 451 pounds of recyclables that were gathered at the office and brought in from home. An unused cubicle was designated as the office recycling area and the exercise proved to be an enjoyable one as staffers worked together to collect and turn in the recycling.

For those efforts, the Daily Post was one of five groups honored in various categories. The others were:

• The Peachtree Corners and United Peachtree Corners Civic Association for the Put Litter in its Place category.

• The Gwinnett Community Alliance in partnership with City of Norcross and Gwinnett Village CID for the Beautify Your Space category, which included building a new playground.

• Lanier High School Environmental Club for the Clean Your Closets category.

• Primerica for the Grow Green category in which the company spruced up the urban agriculture garden at Gwinnett Technical College by weeding, mulching and planting a dozen new trees.

We salute all those who participated this year and give Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful a thumbs up for spearheading this worthwhile initiative.

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