Illegal Dumping on the Rise in Pennsylvania: Report it to Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful

(April 29 2020) – Since stay at home orders were issued on April 1 due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful has received 73 reports identifying illegal dumpsites in 35 different counties across the state. Fourteen percent of the sites are located on state park, state forest, or game lands.

The 73 reports make up 70% of the reports received by the organization so far this year. The increase in dumping could be a result of temporary suspension of trash hauling and recycling services citing worker safety and other limitations. Bulky waste pick-ups and special collections of electronics, tires and appliances have also been postponed until late summer or fall, increasing the problem.

The most frequent item reported was household trash, which was found at 47 sites, followed by tires at 31 sites. Other items reported were appliances, electronics and building supplies, such as demolition and construction waste.

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, a statewide nonprofit, is asking Pennsylvania residents to help locate and report illegal dumping and/or graffiti as part of their Illegal Dump Free program at https://illegaldumpfreepa.org/report-it/.

“Litter and dumped trash poses a threat to the environment as well as to those who clean it up. Documenting illegal dumpsites is a critical step in educating people about illegal dumping on our lands and waters and ultimately in helping to restore the natural beauty of our state. Please be a good steward and if you see an illegal dumpsite, report it,” said Shannon Reiter, President of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful.

Dumpsite information will be logged and shared with local enforcement authorities, as well as local affiliates, state agency partners and other partners. Photos can be included in the report. Contact information of those reporting a site will be kept confidential.

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful also offers a security camera loan program to curb illegal dumping by exposing those who commit this crime. The program offers three concealable, lockable cameras and accessories that capture usable, conviction-worthy footage of license plates and illegal dumpers – even at night. For more information visit https://www.keeppabeautiful.org/illegal-dump-free-pa/ or contact Rob Dubas at rdubas@keeppabeautiful.org or 724.836.4121 ext. 107. The program is available to municipalities, state agencies and nonprofit organizations.

“With the help of Pennsylvania residents we can document what’s out there and reduce the amount of new dumping. We also want to reassure our volunteers that we are busy planning and preparing for the post-pandemic cleanups that are sure to come once restrictions are lifted. We’ll have a lot of catching up to do,” said Reiter.

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s Pick Up Pennsylvania, in support of the International Coastal Cleanup is tentatively planned for September 1 through November 30. Information on the availability of cleanup supplies and supply distribution details will be communicated as they become available. Registration will tentatively open on August 1 at www.keeppabeautiful.org.

Last spring, 7 million pounds of trash and recyclables and 19,082 tires were removed from Pennsylvania roads, trails and waterway through the Pick Up Pennsylvania spring program.

Anyone wishing to support future cleanups can make a donation on our website by clicking on Donate Now or by contacting Barb Christner, Director of Development at bchristner@keeppabeautiful.org or 724.836.4121, ext 114.

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About Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s mission is empowering Pennsylvanians to keep our communities clean and beautiful.  Since 1990, Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful and its volunteers have removed over 147 million pounds of litter from Pennsylvania’s roadways, greenways, parks, forests, and waterways. To learn more about Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, visit www.keeppabeautiful.org.   

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Keep PA Beautiful: Illegal Dumping On The Rise In PA, Report It On Special Webpage

PA Environment Digest Blog -Since stay at home orders were issued on April 1 due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful has received 73 reports identifying illegal dumpsites in 35 different counties across the state.
Fourteen percent of the sites are located on state park, state forest, or game lands.
The 73 reports make up 70 percent of the reports received by the organization so far this year. The increase in dumping could be a result of temporary suspension of trash hauling and recycling services citing worker safety and other limitations.
Bulky waste pick-ups and special collections of electronics, tires and appliances have also been postponed until late summer or fall, increasing the problem.
The most frequent item reported was household trash, which was found at 47 sites, followed by tires at 31 sites. Other items reported were appliances, electronics and building supplies, such as demolition and construction waste.

Report It
Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, a statewide nonprofit, is asking Pennsylvania residents to help locate and report illegal dumping and/or graffiti as part of their Illegal Dump Free program.
“Litter and dumped trash poses a threat to the environment as well as to those who clean it up. Documenting illegal dumpsites is a critical step in educating people about illegal dumping on our lands and waters and ultimately in helping to restore the natural beauty of our state. Please be a good steward and if you see an illegal dumpsite, report it,” said Shannon Reiter, President of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful.
Dumpsite information will be logged and shared with local enforcement authorities, as well as local affiliates, state agency partners and other partners. Photos can be included in the report.
Contact information of those reporting a site will be kept confidential.
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Officials: Increase In Vandalism, Littering At Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

DailyVoice.com -Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area officials are seeing an increase in the number of illegal dumping and vandalism incidences throughout the park in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

A total of 13 incidents of vandalism have been reported at the park so far this year, which include breaking windows and doors, cutting locks, marking graffiti and causing other property damage — up from just two incidents during the same period last year, officials said in a Facebook post Thursday.

Several incidents of household trash being dumped in the park, including furniture and building supplies, have also been reported, officials said.

“These incidents damage park resources and they take staff away from other important duties that serve the public,” the post read.

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Rangers see increase in vandalism, illegal dumping at Delaware Water Gap

wnep.com – PIKE COUNTY, Pa. — Sofas tossed by streams, household construction debris dumped in the woods, and windows broken.

These are just a few examples of the vandalism park rangers and visitors at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area have been seeing and snapping pictures of over the past month.

All of this is happening during a time when national parks are one of the few places people can enjoy because so much is closed during the coronavirus outbreak.

“I’m just totally devastated to hear this because this is the most beautiful place in the world,” Lauryn Deleeuw of Lords Valley said.

Park officials said over the past month they’ve had to deal with 13 reports of vandalism. By comparison, during the same time last year, there were only two cases of vandalism.

“I think it’s a sign of the times, though. It’s definitely the virus and everything else. People are bored,” Deleeuw said.

In a post on social media, rangers reported that some people were even throwing out their own household trash at bins in the park. That was quickly cleaned up.

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Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful providing residents with an option to report illegal dumping that is on the rise due to Covid-19

South Pittsburgh Reporter -As an unintended consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, state parks, state forests, game lands and communities are seeing an increase in littering, including personal protective equipment such as gloves, wipes, and masks as well as an increase of larger items being dumped.

If you come across an illegal dumpsite, Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful wants you to report it as part of their Illegal Dump Free PA Program, https://illegaldumpfreepa.org/report-it/.

Dumpsite information will be logged and shared with local enforcement authorities, as well as local affiliates and state agency and other partners. Photos can be included in the report. Contact information of those reporting a site will be kept confidential. You can also report graffiti through this online form.

Documenting illegal dumpsites is a critical step in educating people about illegal dumping on our lands and waters and ultimately in helping to restore the natural beauty of our state which is a priority for Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful and our many partners.

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More visitors means more trash, waste at area parks

The Times Tribune – SCRANTON — Lauren Holleran has regularly taken her dogs to the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail in Scranton over the past three years.

But in the past few weeks, the 55-year-old Green Ridge resident has noticed more than blossoming flowers and budding trees. She says others on the trail haven’t been conscientious about cleaning up after their canines.

“People are not picking up the poop, and that’s a bad thing,” she said. “It’s terrible because my dogs go right to it.”

A combination of warm weather and cabin fever because of stay-at-home orders from the governor has brought more people to area walking trails, but the influx of people means an increase in dog waste and other unsightly litter. The issue isn’t unique to the heritage trail, which stretches through Luzerne, Lackawanna, Susquehanna and Wayne counties.

Pennsylvania American Water announced plans to close part of the walking path around Lake Scranton starting Monday. A recent uptick in trail use has led to more litter along the trail and unsafe conditions for trail users and utility employees, according to a statement the utility company issued Friday.

Terry Brady, press secretary for the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, believes the increase in visitors and a decrease in staffing has led to some of the littering problems at parks across the state. He added that the littering issue seems to have gotten better in recent weeks.

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Illegal dumping on the rise during pandemic

The Bradford Era – As an unintended consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, state parks, state forests, game lands and communities are seeing an increase in littering, including personal protective equipment such as gloves, wipes, and masks as well as an increase of larger items being dumped.

If you come across an illegal dumpsite, Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful wants you to report it as part of their Illegal Dump Free PA Program, https://illegaldumpfreepa.org/report-it/.

Dumpsite information will be logged and shared with local enforcement authorities, as well as local affiliates and state agency and other partners. Photos can be included in the report. Contact information of those reporting a site will be kept confidential. You can also report graffiti through this online form.

Many trash haulers have temporarily suspended recycling programs and large or bulky item pick-up because of worker safety and other limitations. Most, if not all bulky waste pick-ups and special collections of electronics, tires and appliances have been postponed until late summer or fall.

The increased litter and dumping puts an undue strain on the already reduced staff at state and municipal parks and recreation departments across the state. Responding to and cleaning up illegally dumped trash is taking up valuable time and resources that could be put to much better use during the COVID-19 crisis.

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