In recent years Pittsburgh has undergone a transformation moving away from textile and manufacturing jobs, and become more focused on technology and innovation. One of the main reasons for this change in identity was to reduce the air pollution and overall amount of trash found on the ground, and to make Pittsburgh a green and vibrant city. Pittsburgh has made great strides in becoming a clean and green city. Pittsburgh progress has not gone unnoticed, in 2008 PIttsburgh was selected to host the G20, due to the fact that had made significant improvement to its air pollution and overall quality of living. Even with these encouraging reports, there is still work that needs to be done.
In a recent survey it was reported that Allegheny County, the county in which PIttsburgh is located, had over 486 illegal dump sites. The location of these dump sites tends to be in close proximity to residential houses and waterways, with ¾ of the dumpsites located near low income or vulnerable groups. The illegal dump sites not only look bad, they also result in reduced home values.
The illegal dumpsite are made of construction debris, yard waste and tires. When all of the junk and trash from 486 dump sites was counted, it weighed a staggering 1,200 tons. The sheer weight of the waste site is cause for concern, not to mention that there were over 20,000 tires in the dumps, that could be reused and repurposed. This problem can be easily resolved with the proper use of trash can and dumpsters. Not only will they keep the street junk free but the trash inside the containers will be collected and taken to the appropriate spot, leaving residents with a clean and beautiful site.
Luckily there are groups willing to combat this issue, such as the Tireless Project. The Tireless Project was found in 2003 to try and reduce the amount of junk and debris from the Pittsburgh riverbanks. They are always looking for people to continue to help them maintain Pittsburgh’s beauty, click here to get more information about the group. A group affiliated with the Tireless project is the Dump Busters. The Dump Busters group is a grassroots organization, that is hoping to encourage local residents to stop being the problem and instead become the solution. The goal of the group is clean up illegal dump sites, with the help of local volunteers. Through their long hours and hard work, the Dump Busters have been able to significantly improve the looks and quality of Pittsburgh’s rivers.