- Baltimore's Inner Harbor will likely be getting a second trash-collecting water wheel soon thanks to recent fundraising efforts that have helped reach 99% of the $550,000 goal, according to Baltimore Business Journal.
- This second wheel will be in the city's Canton neighborhood at the mouth of Harris Creek. The creek sends about 5,000 pounds of trash into the harbor every month.
- Less than $12,000 is needed to reach the Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore's goal and that amount will likely be raised next month. The goal is to install the wheel by the end of the year.
Since Baltimore's original wheel launched in May 2014, its "Mr. Trash Wheel" persona has become an online sensation. Using solar energy and river current, the machine has collected roughly 420 tons of marine waste so far. It has also inspired more residents to get involved in helping make the harbor swimmable and fishable by 2020.
The largest donation for the new water wheel was $200,000 from the Maryland Port Administration and other local institutions such as the National Aquarium have also joined in. Three local girls even raised more than $500 for the project at a lemonade stand.
Thank you Eliza, Madelyn, and Parker for setting up a lemonade stand in my honor this weekend. They raised $534! pic.twitter.com/e4LFFNBAS2— Mr. Trash Wheel (@MrTrashWheel) August 8, 2016
This water wheel concept has also taken off in Hawaii. The organization Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii is working on a feasibility study to potentially install a $900,000 wheel that would help clean a notoriously dirty canal. Finding ways to stop marine litter at its source are key to solving the problem, but increased collection and awareness are a good step forward.