Volunteers clean up Black River, in need of team

PIEDMONT, MO (KFVS) - Volunteers took to the Black River near Clearwater Lake on Saturday, June 16 to clean up the trash.

The Clearwater Lake Army Corps of Engineers, Missouri Department of Conservation, Missouri Department of Natural Resources and the League of Watershed Guardians teamed up for a two-day clean up for the June 16 and17 weekend.

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Volunteers took to the river, trails, woods and surrounding areas to pick up any trash they came across.

League of Watershed Guardians Doug Geist said they are using this cleanup to help get the word out that they need a team to volunteer their time permanently to pick up the trash on the river from time to time.

"Not only does it help to keep the river and waterways clean and good for fishing and other outdoor activity and sports, it's really vital to the local economy," Geist said. "So many people, their business and livelihood is tied to the tourism and the people that come down here and enjoy the river."

This hasn't been the first time these organizations and volunteers have cleaned up the river though.

KFVS took a tour of the Black River in June of 2017. Piles of trash were found along the waterway and have since been cleaned up.

The cleanup currently this weekend has produced roughly 15-cubic yards of trash that was picked up. Far less than what was on this part of the river a year ago.

"It's actually getting a lot better," Geist said. "I know that the Corps have had a lot of ongoing efforts out there picking up continuously. And we really have seen a huge change from last October to this year, just in the first mile of the river. Of course, there is a lot to be done."

If you would like more information about forming a stream team for the Black River, you can go to Missouristreamteam.org, lowg.org or call the Missouri Department of Conservation and ask for the Stream Team Unit.

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