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April 2022

Montgomery County’s First ‘Litter Trap’ Installed in Anacostia River Tributary

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The Anacostia Riverkeeper, the Montgomery County Department of the Environment, and the Chesapeake Bay Trust announced the installation of the County’s first “litter trap” that will catch trash flowing down a stream or river. The trap will float in the Lockridge Drive Tributary and capture litter. Using the stream current, it will guide debris into the trap and prevent it from flowing downstream to the Anacostia River and into the Chesapeake Bay.

“Plastic bottles make up 60 percent of all the trash that is found floating on the Anacostia River, and while the best way to reduce trash in our waterways is not to litter at all, this litter trap is another way to make sure that we are not leaving environmentally harmful trash behind,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. “I want to thank the Chesapeake Bay Trust and Anacostia Riverkeeper, our partners in finding innovative ways to clean up our streams and creeks. We are proud to support funding for projects such as the litter trap and to work with these local groups committed to cleaning their communities. These programs provide jobs, create awareness, and build community support for protecting our environment.”

Anacostia Riverkeeper is working with the Montgomery County Conservation Corps for maintenance, monitoring and data collection as the litter is collected and sorted.

“Anacostia Riverkeeper is thrilled to celebrate the installation of this first Bandalong Litter Trap in Montgomery County, making a total of eight in the watershed,” said Riverkeeper Trey Sherard of Anacostia Riverkeeper. “Trash, especially plastic, is such an enormous problem in the Anacostia and worldwide that we hope this is the first of many trash traps coming to the County as we continue to partner with the Department of Environmental Protection, Chesapeake Bay Trust, and Montgomery County Conservation Corps. What a wonderfully appropriate way to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act.”

This trash trap project was funded via the Montgomery County Watershed Restoration and Outreach Grant Program. It is a partnership between the County and the Chesapeake Bay Trust that funds public outreach and stewardship projects, community-based restoration water quality implementation projects and litter-reduction projects throughout the County. The grants are funded entirely through the Montgomery County Water Quality Protection Charge and are administered by the Chesapeake Bay Trust, a regional grant-maker specializing in engaging nonprofit entities in restoration and outreach work.

“Our successful partnership with Montgomery County makes it possible to support diverse groups taking actions that both enrich their local communities and positively impact our natural resources,” said Jana Davis, president of the Chesapeake Bay Trust. “Innovative grantee projects, such as the litter trap, help improve healthy streams and rivers for all to enjoy.”

Since January, over $560,000 in grant funding was awarded to 15 projects throughout Montgomery County and since the program’s inception in 2014, over $3.4 million has been awarded through the grant program.

Projects have included public outreach; stewardship and community-based restoration efforts such as planting native plants and trees, promoting, and implementing green infrastructure practices, community training programs, and removing impervious surfaces; and trash reduction in the Anacostia River Watershed through litter trap maintenance and monitoring.

Supporting Green Innovation & the Climate Action Plan: A Case Study in the Town of Edmonston

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The Town of Edmonston has several “firsts” and “greats” as accomplishments, including being home to one of the “Greenest Streets in America” thanks to the completion of a “green street” in 2010. A “green street” is a technique that can include several green infrastructure practices, such as street trees, rain gardens, pervious pavement, bioretention cells, and bioswales, in one location that is centered around and connected to a street site. Edmonston’s “Green Street” project is a model for others that wish to “Go Green” to make their town greener and healthier.

Pervious gutter and curb on Decatur Street.

Edmonston recently installed its 30th green infrastructure practice, with 10 more being constructed in the summer of 2022. Yes, you read that correctly; this is a lot of green in a small town that 1,545 people call home. Many of these practices were implemented with grant funds including through the Prince George’s Stormwater Stewardship Grant Program supported by the Department of the Environment. The Town plans to continue pushing the envelope by installing green practices while maintaining the existing practices so that they look beautiful and function to clean water while being home to native plants that attract our birds and butterflies.

The Town is touting another “first” with the installation of the first pervious curb and gutter systems in the Maryland. These innovative techniques, which were tested in the west coast and are used extensively in New York City, were brought to Maryland by Ecosite, Inc., a county-based firm, who worked closely with the Town on the projects. The pervious curb and gutter system use the road’s right of way space to house the green infrastructure practice that soaks up stormwater from the roadways before it enters the storm drain. You can visit the pervious curb and gutter systems on Decatur Street (main street) and on Ingraham Street in the industrial district bounded by 46th Avenue, Ingraham Street, and Lafayette Place. Speaking of “firsts” Edmonston installed several “industrial green streets” bringing green infrastructure to these busy, high traffic areas that are home to many thriving businesses.

Installing an industrial green street bioretention practice.

The Town, with Ecosite’s technical support, has been pioneering and demonstrating the use of “in-situ” bioretention design and construction. This technique minimizes the excavation of existing soils and instead improves these soils by incorporating well aged organic materials like pine fines and composted leaf mulch into the soil. This technique was developed by Dr. Robert Gouin, professor emeritus of the University of Maryland School of Horticulture. By reducing the need to excavate and remove existing soils and replacing them with expensive man-made bioretention media, the practice reduces bioretention system costs to 30% of traditional costs and takes our remediation dollars further. In addition, this practice results in improved soils that provide significantly greater infiltration capacity, treatment of runoff, and pollutant removal.

Finally, the Town considers the green infrastructure practices part of a longer-term strategy that provides many benefits to those who live and visit Edmonston. Mayor Tracy Gant says, “Edmonston is committed to protecting our natural environment for future generations through innovative approaches and practices that protect the Anacostia Watershed and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay.”

These green infrastructure practices reduce flooding, improve water quality, improve air quality, reduce urban heat effects, and support climate resiliency goals for the Town, County, State, and beyond. Learn more about the Town’s greening efforts at and more about the County’s Climate Action Plan at The Prince George’s Stormwater Stewardship Grant Program supports innovative and sustainable green infrastructure practices throughout Prince George’s County.

Explore other grants supported by the Prince George’s Stormwater Stewardship Grant Program in the Town of Edmonston below.

Water Quality Retrofits for Hamilton Street- for the installation of seven rain gardens on Hamilton Street. $131,785.

Water Quality Retrofits for Gallatin Street Project- for the installation of 10 rain gardens on Gallatin Street. $142,803.

Water Quality Retrofits for Lafayette Place Industrial Green Street Project- to implement the fourth industrial “green street” which will be located in the district of Lafayette Place. $68,527.

Water Quality Retrofits for Ingraham Green Street Project- for green street implementation on Ingraham Street between 46th Ave and Lafayette Street, further demonstrating green infrastructure efforts in the Town and including an industrial pilot for future replication. $169,530.

Water Quality Retrofits for the 46th Avenue Green Street Project- to design and construct eight curbside rain gardens and one permeable concrete curb and gutter to treat over five acres of impervious surface. $148,000.

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