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Rhode Island Launches Marine Debris Clean Up Bill
According to the Ocean Conversancy, only 10 percent of the debris in Rhode Island waters comes from boats or other water activities. Shoreline activities, such as fishing or beach visits, accounts for 67 percent of this waste. A 2011 report found that Rhode Island’s marine trash is mostly plastic, but cigarettes lead the list of most common debris.

The proposed legislation puts some of the blame for this trash on companies that create the packaging. “If we give the producer of the product some responsibility for the disposal — or better, recycling — of the packaging, they’ll be much swifter in adopting environmentally friendly packaging design,” said Rep. Donna Walsh, sponsor of the legislation.

 
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Grants Target Farm Runoff - An effort to improve lake water quality is part of a five-year with includes working with farmers to implement conservation practices intended to reduce the amount of pollution flowing into area lakes. Other components include restoring wetlands and retrofitting storm drains to filter out phosphorous-laden debris.


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