While most Tahoe visitors use Labor Day Weekend for lounging at the beach, recreation on the water or hiking through the mountains, Tahoe locals use the holiday for a massive trash cleanup.
A Labor Day trash cleanup was hosted by Keep Tahoe Blue on Monday, where over 70 volunteers picked up more than 224 pounds of trash at Commons Beach, Skylandia Beach and along the Lower Truckee River. Monday’s event was also in partnership with Arcade Belts and Tahoe City Public Utility District.
In the piles of litter were 2,064 cigarette butts and 1,520 plastic straws. The group also found kitchen knives and plastic cups, but the biggest trash problem in the area remains to be single-use plastics.
— Vicki Gonzalez (@KCRAVicki) September 3, 2018
“Plastics do not biodegrade, they photodegrade and break into small pieces in the sun. Broken-down plastics are harmful to wildlife and can leach chemicals in the water,” Marilee Movius with Keep Tahoe Blue said to KCRA.
Tahoe trash cleanups have become popular events for locals looking to mitigate the negative effects of the large crowds visiting the area during holidays. In 2017, volunteers at cleanups removed more 4,010 pounds of trash and cleaned more than 28 miles of Lake Tahoe’s shoreline. Just a month ago on August 5th, locals cleaned up over 500 pounds of trash near Bonsai Rock.