AS Sustainability hosts final fall creek cleanup

Transfer student Gabby Larocco found trash alongside the creek such as bike parts and washed away food wrappers. Photo credit: Kimberly Morales

On Wednesday, Associated Students Sustainability joined Community Action Volunteers in Education to host the final creek cleanup of the semester.

The organization led students who continued to show up, despite the aftermath of a week of rainy weather.

While keeping a safe distance from the water, Gabby Larocco stepped down to the shore of the river to pick up any hard-to-reach trash. Photo credit: Kimberly Morales
Gabby Larocco scooped up trash that had been buried from the river stream as she attended her first creek clean-up since transferring to Chico State. Photo credit: Kimberly Morales

While rainstorms left students to scour through miles of muddy leaves and trek through cold mud, tens of students arrived at Alumni Glenn dressed in heavy-weather boots, ready to grab their trash pickers and waste buckets.

Stretching their forces from the banks closest to the Physical Science Building to the beginning of Warner Street, students were mindful of safety precautions and walked in pairs across the edges of Big Chico Creek while making sure not clear up any needles, feces or remains of homeless shelters. Students were also advised not to go into the creek water.

“Today we are going to clean up with the creek,” Britney McCreary, the Green Events Coordinator for Associated Students, said. “This creek comes from the Sierra Nevada, travels through here, goes to the delta and into the ocean. We have about 200,000 seasonal salmon that run throughout creek as well as otters and endangered turtles.”

“We’re hoping to make the ecosystem a lot better and safer. We will be doing Creek Cleanup again next semester aiming at least once a month,” McCreary said.

While weather conditions did pose safety concerns for students, those in attendance enjoyed the event nonetheless and appreciated the event sticking to their schedule.

“Leaves were slippery, the trash was inside the leaves and we had to do more digging,” Kelly Cooper said. “It’s usually a lot easier when the leaves are dry.”

“We weren’t sure if we were going to do this clean up or not, but rain or shine, let’s get it,” McCreary said.

“We try giving back to this school by picking all the trash that we can. We collect it and bring it back, sectioning out what is recyclable at our waste station, toss whatever goes into landfill. We record all of our trash that we collect every single time.”

Kimberly Morales can be reached at [email protected] or @kimberlymnews on Twitter.