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NEWS RELEASE

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
Department of Conservation
and Natural Resources
Commonwealth News Bureau
Room 308, Main Capitol
Harrisburg, PA 17120

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Gretchen Leslie
DCNR Press Secretary
(717) 772-9101

DCNR SEEKS COMMUNITY VOLUNTEERS TO HELP CLEAN UP BUCHANAN STATE FOREST
Cleanup Of Illegal Dumpsite Scheduled For September 20

HARRISBURG (September 12, 2003) — Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Michael DiBerardinis today issued a call for volunteers to help clean up an illegal dump area in Buchanan State Forest, Bedford County, on Saturday, Sept. 20, as part of Pennsylvania’s Forest Lands Beautification Program.

“This ‘Dirty Dozen’ site has proven to be quite a challenge,” Secretary DiBerardinis said. “The first phase of this cleanup, along a stretch of Burnt Church Road in East Providence Township, yielded 56 tons of trash, appliances and tires. However, several tons of trash still remain before this site can be removed from the list. We hope volunteers can help us meet our goal.”

The cleanup, being organized locally by PA CleanWays of Bedford County, will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 20. Interested volunteers should contact Guy Stottlemyer at the PA CleanWays Bedford County office at (814) 623-7900 extension 124 to participate in the cleanup and receive additional information.

Participants are encouraged to wear sturdy shoes, long pants, long sleeves and work gloves. All volunteers must be at least 12 years of age. Volunteers under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult supervisor during the cleanup and must have a consent form signed by a parent or guardian. Each adult supervisor may be responsible for no more than six youth volunteers.

Signed into law in 1998, the Forest Lands Beautification Act provides up to $7.5 million over five years to clean up existing dumps in state forests and parks by recycling or properly disposing of waste materials. The program is funded by the Municipal Waste Planning, Recycling and Waste Reduction Act (Act 101), administered by the Department of Environmental Protection.

DCNR works in partnership with PA CleanWays, a non-profit organization, to identify dumpsites and to form community volunteer teams to help remove the waste.

About 300 illegal dumpsites have been identified throughout Pennsylvania. To date, more than 200 sites have been cleaned through the efforts of contractors and nearly 2,000 volunteers. These cleanups have resulted in the removal of more than 2,300 tons of household trash, 20,000 tires, 330 tons of scrap metal, 525 tons of concrete, and more.

The Forest Lands Beautification Program also seeks to educate citizens about proper methods of disposal. The program’s web site, www.CleanPAForests.org (select “Proper Disposal”), includes a link to “Earth’s 911,” a public-private partnership providing a national database of recycling information. Users can enter their ZIP code to obtain a listing of local curbside or drop-off recycling programs, solid-waste disposal locations, yard-waste composting sites and household hazardous-waste disposal sites. The database includes names and locations of facilities, phone numbers, hours of operation, and any restrictions pertaining to the acceptance of waste.

Those wanting more information on proper disposal of any item are encouraged to contact Regina Miller, Bedford County recycling coordinator, at (814)-623-8099 or bedcocd@bedford.net.

For more information, call the Forest Lands Beautification Program toll-free at 1-877-7PA-FOREST (1-877-772-3673) or visit the program web site at www.CleanPAForests.org.

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