Unlimited Access. Try it Today! Your First 10 Days Always $0.99
News Opinion Readers Respond

Harbor's trash starts in vacant lots [Letter]

There are 26 outlets to the Baltimore Harbor, and most of these are from the neighborhoods that empty into it. The new trash interceptor is amazing ("New water wheel joins fight against harbor trash," May 6) but it will clean up only the Jones Falls outlet. One cannot jump from having this interceptor to the conclusion expressed in a recent article that we will have a swimmable Baltimore Harbor in 2020.

The trash problem is not a water problem but a land problem that is not getting the attention, and bold moves are necessary to solve this issue. Education is not enough! What is needed is a plan that works with the various community associations and works to change behavior of the citizens. The plan should involve a "land-keeper" under the city's housing department who would make frequent alley rounds with members of the associations to identify the mini-landfills in the backyards of vacant houses and report their locations to the Department of Public Works for cleanup. Having worked with the 17 associations in the Harris Creek Watershed Trash Project, I am convinced that the leaders here can play a major role in reducing trash from going into the Baltimore Harbor.

June 2020 is coming up fast. Unless the Waterfront Partnership and Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake stop dreaming and come up with better plans to reduce neighborhood trash accumulations, the Baltimore Harbor will not be swimmable in 2020. I am willing to buy the bathing suits for the mayor and members of the Waterfront Partnership who would like to take the first jump and stay in the water for at least 15 minutes to prove this point. Stop dreaming and come together! We can still do it with the right plan.

Dr. Raymond D. Bahr, Baltimore

To respond to this letter, send an email to talkback@baltimoresun.com. Please include your name and contact information.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Plastic bag fee for city shoppers proposed -- again
    Plastic bag fee for city shoppers proposed -- again

    Nickel charge intended to help combat litter

  • Plastic bags a nuisance but so is a fee [Letter]
    Plastic bags a nuisance but so is a fee [Letter]

    Plastic is ubiquitous. It is used in cups, sandwich bags, regular trash bags, produce bundling, newspaper deliveries, product packaging, doggy litter, and the list goes on. While targeted efforts at reducing excess use of plastic shopping bags are beneficial, the implementation of a consumer...

  • Md. Democrats offer ruinous agenda
    Md. Democrats offer ruinous agenda

    I wonder where the rulers in the Maryland Senate and House of Delegates are going to get the money to fund what Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller described as the Democratic agenda ("Senate panel rewrites Hogan's charter school law," March 26)? I guess they will do what they do every...

  • Don't shed tears for Bergdahl
    Don't shed tears for Bergdahl

    Your editorial regarding Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is typical of The Sun's liberal agenda ("Hero or traitor?" March 27). So much concern for the deserter, but nary a word about the six men who gave their lives trying to rescue him.

  • Black-on-black crime is not just a problem for blacks
    Black-on-black crime is not just a problem for blacks

    Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has sent a message to African-American men to step up and take responsibility for guiding black youths away from violence ("City leaders call on black men to mentor youths and stop the violence," March 25).

  • Maryland needs renewable energy
    Maryland needs renewable energy

    The first day of spring ironically delivered another snowstorm in Maryland ("Before spring, snow threatens Baltimore once more," March 19). Fluke weather patterns are expected to become more severe as climate change persists. The extreme shifts from warm sunny days to cold, wintry ones takes...