Renew the Coosa Expands to 'Renew Our Rivers'
Renew the Coosa, the award-winning river cleanup campaign spearheaded by Alabama Power, is now Renew Our Rivers, a name change that better reflects its growing impact.
"In just three years, Renew the Coosa has grown from a single event to a nationally recognized cleanup campaign that spans two states, three river systems and brings together thousands of volunteers," said Charles McCrary, president and CEO of Alabama Power.
McCrary unveiled the name change today at a celebration at Plant Gadsden honoring the hundreds of partners and volunteers who help make the cleanup campaign a success. McCrary also announced a series of educational grants, administered by the Alabama Power Foundation, which are designed to help teach students about the environment.
"Renew our Rivers better reflects the scope of the cleanup campaign and Alabama Power's commitment to efforts that improve our rivers and shorelines," McCrary said. "When communities and businesses come together with a common vision, we can make a difference. "
Last year's cleanup involved more than 1,700 volunteers who pulled more than 142 tons of litter and debris from lakes on the Coosa, Black Warrior and Tallapoosa rivers. In December, Alabama Power received a national, anti- littering award from Keep America Beautiful for its role in Renew the Coosa. The award was presented during Keep America Beautiful's national conference in Washington.
Sue Smith, director of education and training at Keep America Beautiful, attended today's celebration in Gadsden, where Renew Our Rivers got its start in 2000. "Everyone involved in Renew Our Rivers should be proud of their contribution to this tremendous program," Smith said. "For 50 years, Keep America Beautiful has worked with volunteers to create more beautiful and better quality communities. We're proud to recognize a group of organizations who share our passion."
Renew Our Rivers 2003 features 11 volunteer cleanups on lakes along the Coosa, Tallapoosa and Black Warrior rivers in Alabama and on the upper Coosa River in Georgia. Volunteers from Georgia Power's Plant Hammond are spearheading the Georgia cleanup.
This year's cleanups have already begun and will take place throughout the spring and fall.
The Alabama Power Foundation grants will go to teachers at schools in the vicinity of each Alabama lake where a cleanup takes place. The $1,000 grants will be distributed with the assistance of the lake organizations that help lead each cleanup.
A fact sheet on Renew Our Rivers accompanies this release. For more information about Alabama Power's environmental commitment, visit www.alabamapower.com . For more information about the Alabama Power Foundation, visit www.alabamapowerfoundation.com .
Alabama Power, a subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company
Campaign Facts * Renew Our Rivers, formerly known as Renew the Coosa, began in May 2000, after employees from Alabama Power's Plant Gadsden became concerned about litter found in and on the banks of the Coosa River. Renew Our Rivers is now the Southeast's largest organized, river-system cleanup and one of the largest of its kind in the nation. * In 2002 Alabama Power received Keep America Beautiful's highest national award for litter prevention for its role in the Renew Our Rivers/Renew the Coosa campaign. * Last year, more than 1,700 volunteers removed more than 142 tons of litter and debris. Individual totals from last year's major cleanups: H. Neely Henry Lake, 113 tons; Lay Lake, 15 tons; Lake Logan Martin, 6 tons; Lake Jordan, 4 tons; Weiss Lake, 3 tons; Mitchell Lake, 1 ton. Since the campaign's inception, more than 2,200 volunteers have removed more than 242 tons of trash from the rivers and reservoirs. * Renew Our Rivers now includes 11 lake cleanups on the Coosa, Tallapoosa and Black Warrior rivers in Alabama and on the upper Coosa River in Georgia. * This year the Alabama Power Foundation will join lake organizations to provide Renew Our Rivers educational grants to teachers at Alabama schools. The $1,000 grants are designed to help educate students about Alabama's environment. * For more information about Alabama Power's environmental commitment, visit www.alabamapower.com . For more information about the Alabama Power Foundation, visit www.alabamapowerfoundation.com .
SOURCE: Alabama Power
CONTACT: Michael Sznajderman of Alabama Power, +1-205-257-4155, or