How We're Cleaning Up America's Second Most Polluted Waterway

Volunteers helped clear more than 8,000 pounds of garbage at a polluted creek in Pennsylvania

In 2000, Connoquenessing Creek in Butler County, Pennsylvania, was rated the second-most polluted waterway in America. After 12 years, this ranking still had not improved, motivating a group of volunteers to begin an annual cleanup effort, coordinated by the Allegheny Aquatic Alliance (AAA). Since then it has grown to become an important community tradition.

Recently, Honeywell Hometown Solutions, the company’s corporate citizenship initiative, and 10 Honeywell volunteers joined the effort and helped remove and recycle 8,600 pounds of garbage (including 1,500 tires) along a 19-mile stretch of the creek. Honeywell also contributed cut-resistant gloves and safety sunglasses to all volunteers and a financial donation.

“We’re proud of the progress Allegheny Aquatic Alliance is making in returning this waterway to its pristine state,” said Rayanne Aiken, maintenance engineer at the nearby Fombell site, adding, "our community is thrilled to have a more navigable recreational waterway and to see the return of wildlife to the clean water.”

According to the AAA, this year’s cleanup was their most successful to date, resulting in the total removal of more than 85,000 pounds (or 42 tons) of garbage, with the help of 190 volunteers. Since 2012, more than 360,000 pounds of garbage—the equivalent of 90 cars—have been removed, including more than 4,000 tires.

Josephine Lee

Performance Materials and Technologies