Tag Archives: trash

Valdosta Stormwater cleanup at Sugar Creek 2021-09-17

Great relief was felt by the WWALS Sugar Creek cleanup crew, because Valdosta Stormwater has taken a hand at the Sugar Creek trashjam!

[Trashjam Quartet by Angela Bray]
Trashjam Quartet by Angela Bray

You are all invited to come help clean up Sugar Creek on Saturday, October 9, 2021, at this same location behind the Salty Snapper on Gornto Road.

Meanwhile, thanks to Valdosta Stormwater for not just cleaning up, but starting some repeated steps to find out when this trashjam forms and where it’s coming from.

This is the same trashjam that was pictured in Valdosta’s 2010 Stormwater Master Plan, as discussed with Mayor Scott James on his radio show, August 12, 2021.

Finally, on Friday, September 16, 2021, Valdosta Stormwater Division got hands-on and cleaned up themselves!

[Sugar Creek Trashjam]
Sugar Creek Trashjam

Here’s what Valdosta Stormwater Manager Angela Bray sent along with these pictures. Continue reading

River and Creek Cleanup 2021-10-09

River and Creek Cleanup, WWALS, Lowndes County, Valdosta 2021-10-09 (PDF)

Hahira, GA, September 16, 2020 — WWALS has found some of the sources of the infamous trashjam on Sugar Creek, and at least one upstream property owner has made progress in stopping litter before it escapes. But there are other sources, and trash still collects back of the Salty Snapper.

Downstream on the Withlacoochee River, flood waters spread that trash all over the Land Between the Rivers at the Little River Confluence, where one day there will be a River Camp and a River Park. You are invited to join us at Troupville Boat Ramp to walk downstream and help clean up that property, too. Valdosta and Lowndes County also have cleanup locations that same day.

“If you are looking to help make a difference, these locations need the most help, 9AM, Saturday, October 9, 2021!” said WWALS member Bobby McKenzie, who has been on this trash case for a year now.

[Flyer]
Flyer

No boats necessary, although if you want to bring a boat, there are water cleanup opportunities. Please bring sturdy mud boots or shoes, long pants and clothes that can get wet or dirty, insect repellant, a refillable water bottle, and an emergency phone number. Trash bags and trash pickers will be provided, as well as drinking water and snacks, but bring your own if you can. Please maintain a physical distance of at least six feet from people not in your household. Please wear a mask when near people not in your household. We will have extra masks.

This event is part of the Georgia Rivers Alive cleanup program.

Also participating will be Current Problems from Gainesville, Florida.

Update 2021-09-17: facebook event.

The WWALS locations are:

  • Salty Snapper (Sugar Creek)
    Address: Parking lot, Salty Snapper, 1405 Gornto Rd, Valdosta, GA 31602.
    GPS: 30.861809, -83.318841
  • Land Between the Rivers (Little and Withlacoochee Rivers) @ Troupville Boat Ramp
    Address: 19664 Valdosta Hwy, Valdosta, GA 31602, west of I-75 exit 18.
    GPS: 30.851842, -83.346536
    It will be hunting season. Please wear hunting orange. Do not cross the river. WWALS will have sign-in sheets that are also event waivers so our insurance will cover you.

The Valdosta Locations are:

Continue reading

Sugar Creek Trash in 2010 Valdosta Stormwater Master Plan: Suwannee Riverkeeper and Mayor Scott James 2021-08-12

“If you see it, it’ll break your heart. In a deadfall it all gathers,” Valdosta Mayor Scott James said to me on his radio show about trash in Sugar Creek, just above the Withlacoochee River, where it washes downstream into Florida and the Suwannee River, onwards to the Gulf. We discussed how the problem has been documented by the City of Valdosta since 2010, and some inexpensive solutions.

[Radio 2021, Plan 2010]
Radio 2021, Plan 2010

Here is video I took for WWALS of that August 12, 2021, radio show. Continue reading

Massive Valdosta Litter Source Found 2021-07-12

A month ago Bobby McKenzie found a motherlode of trash. He went upstream on Sugar Creek, then Hightower Creek, across St. Augustine Road, to the parking lot that contains Cook Out, Chick-fil-A, and Steak and Shake.

He reported it to Valdosta Code Enforcement. Since then, we’ve been having some fruitful conversations with the city and with business owners. More on that later.

[Trash heap, St. Augustine Road, Sugar Creek, Withlacoochee River]
Trash heap, St. Augustine Road, Sugar Creek, Withlacoochee River

From: bobby mckenzie
To: bcorbitt@valdostacity.com
Sent: Tuesday, July 13, 2021, 11:17:14 AM EDT
Subject: Massive Valdosta Litter Source Found

Good Morning,

I would like to report 2 locations within Valdosta for being a significant contributor to a recurring litter problem to Sugar Creek. Both locations can be reached on St Augustine Road. One location is the far south end of the parking lot that is home to Hobby Lobby, Tractor Supply and fast food places Cook Out and Steak and Shake. Continue reading

Pictures: Sugar Creek Beach, Shoals, Limbo Log 2021-07-10

It’s surprisingly lovely, Sugar Creek. It has a great beach, stretches where birds are far louder than traffic, some shoals (thanks to a Valdosta sewer main), and it’s wider in spots than the Alapahoochee River,

It’s a shame it’s always gotten trash and sewage.

Here’s what we’re doing, and how you can help with that and the rest of what needs to be done.

[Beautiful Sugar Creek, but trashed]
Beautiful Sugar Creek, but trashed

Meanwhile, Austin, Texas, is turning its urban Waller Creek into Waterloo Greenway of linked parks and trails down to the Colorado River. Continue reading

Sugar Creek cleanup 2021-07-10

And the winner in yesterday’s tower of trash was….

[Tower of Trash]
Tower of Trash

Zacados!

We haven’t decided what the winner’s prize is yet.

Bobby McKenzie and Russell McBride staged one of their almost-weekly cleanups at the Sugar Creek logjam below the Salty Snapper on Gornto Road in Valdosta, and netted (literally) this tower of trash. Continue reading

Suwannee Springs flood debris 2021-01-12

Many people have wondered when SRWMD will finish cleaning the debris out of Suwannee Springs from the flood last July. Probably in a few weeks, not months.

Yesterday at the invitation of Edwin McCook of the Suwannee River Water Management District I went to see the problem. He and I and his consultant discussed the problem.

As you can see, getting that rammed-in driftwood out of all that dirt and sand would be quite a task to do by hand. Edwin decided to start with larger equipment. The catch is how to get it in there, and what can fit. He and the consultant are working up a plan.

There will still be need for volunteers to do manual cleanup, since the big equipment can’t get everything. Stay tuned, and we’ll let you know when that will happen. It will probably be several weeks yet.

[Down the steps]
Down the steps

Continue reading

Valdosta catching illegal dumpers, and some new management

Valdosta is actively pursuing the culprits ditching trash and dumping fecal waste into the Withlacoochee River, causing repeated spikes at GA 133.

They say they have even caught some.

And Valdosta has promoted two people: Catherine Ammons of Human Resources to Deputy City Manager of Administration, and Richard Hardy of Public Works to Deputy City Manager of Operations. Hardy is still Director of Public Works, but now he’s also over Engineering and Utilities, which also still retain their same Directors.

We don’t know whether these two news items are related. We do know we’re glad Valdosta recognizes that people downstream will continue to think they’re the cause of every Withlacoochee River contamination incident unless they actively find the real culprits.

Don’t worry: we post positive news about Valdosta when there is some, but we continue to watch them and other possible contamination sources like a hawk.

[Cleanups, Deputy City Managers]
Cleanups, Deputy City Managers

Pursuing dumping culprits

Valdosta PR, December 2, 2020, City Stresses Importance of Reporting Illegal Dumping in Local Waterways (see also Valdosta Today), Continue reading

River and Creek Cleanup, Lowndes County, Valdosta, and WWALS 2020-10-10

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (See also PDF)

River and Creek Cleanup, Lowndes County, Valdosta, and WWALS 2020-10-10

Hahira, GA, September 8, 2020 — Lowndes County has three rivers, all great for fishing, boating, and swimming, and Valdosta has many creeks. Everyone enjoys our waterways better when they are clean. Here’s a fun opportunity to get outside and clean them up.

[Flyer: Cleanup on three rivers, many creeks]
Flyer: Cleanup on three rivers, many creeks

Lowndes County, the City of Valdosta, and WWALS Watershed Coalition, Inc. (WWALS) are jointly organizing a three-river cleanup in the county, at Troupville Boat Ramp on the Little River, at Sugar Creek on the Withlacoochee River, and at Naylor Boat Ramp on the Alapaha River, plus cleanups in Valdosta on Onemile Branch, Twomile Branch, and Sugar Creek.

Please join us, from 9 AM to 11 AM, on Saturday, October 10, 2020. No boat required, although if you want to bring a boat, there are water cleanup opportunities at each river location and some of the creeks.

Please bring sturdy mud boots or shoes, long pants and clothes that can get wet or dirty, insect repellant, a refillable water bottle, and an emergency phone number. Trash bags and trash pickers will be provided, as well as drinking water and snacks, but bring your own if you can.

Please maintain a physical distance of at least six feet from people not in your household. Please wear a mask when near people not in your household. We will have extra masks.

Events: Facebook, meetup.

The Valdosta Locations are:

Continue reading

OK quality mid-week, but much rain yesterday, Withlacoochee River 2020-04-22

2020-05-01: Yes, water quality was much worse that weekend, but then, Withlacoochee River good despite dirty creek 2020-05-01.

Five inches of rain Thursday in Brooks and Lowndes Counties means the next water quality results will probably be worse than these charts.

[2020-04-23 NWS Tallahassee Radar]
2020-04-23 NWS Tallahassee Radar

Valdosta’s upstream Withlacoochee River results were pretty good for Wednesday, April 22, 2020, and Madison Health’s downstream results were quite good for Monday, April 20. However, Valdosta’s results were significantly higher at the state line than Madison Health’s, and not very good at Nankin and worse at Knights Ferry. Monday Valdosta got a bad reading on Okapilco Creek and not very good on Wednesday. There is some question as to where Valdosta is sampling Okapilco Creek, but that’s another story.

WWALS will be sampling today so as to have some results tomorrow. You can help by donating for water quality collection supplies.

[Raindown 2020-04-19-23]
Raindown 2020-04-19-23
For context and the entire WWALS composite spreadsheet of Georgia and Florida data, see wwals.net/issues/testing/.
See also Continue reading