TECH BYTE: Tech Targets Trash in Waterways

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — Trash isn’t something we want in our waterways.

That’s why tech is helping to remove tons of garbage from the Tennessee River and others.

“These devices are designed to collect and filter out the small microplastics, as well as any gas and oil that’s in the water,” said Randy Hartman, Keep America Beautiful.

These Seabins seen in the Tennessee River are the largest network of litter skimming devices in the world.

They’re used in several waterways throughout the southeast.

Each one is capable of removing 3,000 pounds of debris a year.

A lot of that trash found in the river includes plastic bottles.

But the Seabins really help in picking up smaller debris like Styrofoam, which is harder to remove by hand, and still easy for wildlife to eat.

“All that litter eventually, if it’s on the roadside or something, it goes into a waterway somewhere, and eventually leads to our streams and rivers,” said Ken Flynn, Tennessee Department of Transportation.

The full network of Seabins will remove up to 54,000 pounds of waste from the Tennessee River each year.

That’s a lot of litter, right? The Tennessee Aquarium says it plans to put some of that trash the Seabins collect on display, to educate more people about the littering problem.

It’s just another reminder to protect the water, and its wildlife.

Categories: Environment, Local News, Tech Byte, Technology