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30 April . 2024

Preserving Our Natural Spaces: Forests, Parks, and Waterways

As you meander through Washington’s endless beauty, it’s not uncommon to find wrappers and cans and bottles and plastic strewn about. When faced with litter, you can either shake your head in disapproval, harbor frustration, or take initiative to clean it up. Despite humanity’s remarkable achievements, our natural landscapes, waterways, and cultural heritage often bear the brunt of our neglectful practices. But we’re humans too and we can fix bad habits by taking action.

Discover how you can contribute to improving the Pacific Northwest’s splendor. It’s pretty easy:

  • Join a cleanup event.
  • Adopt a Trail and help maintain it with a group of volunteers.
  • Get educated on best-practices, both at home and while you’re out in the wild.
  • Pick up trash as you go. Spot it, grab it, trash it.
  • Donate! Garbage is expensive. Plus, you can donate to specific causes that will make your life and environment much better.

Key Organizations Making a Difference

Clean Trails: “Imagine if everyone picked up just one piece of litter.” That’s the driving question behind Clean Trails, which promotes trail adoption programs and is developing trail box projects to facilitate communal cleanup efforts. They also host National CleanUp Day® on September 21st.

The Nature Conservancy: With a vision to address climate change and biodiversity loss by 2030, The Nature Conservancy works to “sequester 3 billion metric tons of CO2 yearly, the same as taking 650 million cars off the road every year” and safeguard terrestrial and marine ecosystems. They champion the leadership of indigenous and local communities and encourage individual participation. Their educational outreach extends to youth, nurturing environmental stewards. They’re on a mission to plant a billion trees, a figure that rivals the tree population of Washington state. Mindblowing. Imagine the collective effort required to plant such an immense number of trees—The Nature Conservancy welcomes all kinds of support.

Washington Coast Savers: Since 1971, Washington Coast Savers has been committed to removing marine debris from the Washington coast and the Strait of Juan de Fuca, ensuring our beaches remain pristine. Also, if you like good food they host post-cleanup BBQ parties. Yum.

Local Initiatives around Puget Sound

Whether you are interested in restoring habitats, protecting wildlife, or cleaning up waterways, you can find a project that suits your skills and interests. With that comes plenty of opportunity to bring friends, family and even meet great people from all over the area. Here are some examples of local initiatives that are making a difference in the Puget Sound area.

Pierce County Volunteering: Explore volunteer opportunities within Pierce County to contribute to local conservation efforts. Help your nearby parks shine and give tomorrow’s visitors the clean parks they deserve.

  • Puget Sound Keeper: Assist in removing pollutants like old tires and marine debris, monitor microplastic levels, and participate in salmon surveys. They even offer kayak cleanups—a unique way to tidy up while exploring Lake Union and the Duwamish River.
  • Tahoma Bird Alliance: Bird enthusiasts, unite! You can join the Tahoma Bird Alliance's efforts to enhance avian habitats through education, donations, tree planting, and more.
  • Whale Scout Join Whale Scout in safeguarding whale and salmon populations in Puget Sound. They offer educational programs and conservation initiatives, including habitat restoration to remove invasive species, litter, and tree planting. Participating in these events is a fantastic opportunity to connect with others and protect our marine life.
  • Tehaleh Owners Association: Your community values environmental stewardship too! Learn about local nature, eco-friendly lawn care, and proper disposal of hazardous materials at the Tehaleh Owners Association.

Actions You Can Take Today

  • Be Proactive: Heading on a quick hike? Carry a trash bag while you’re out and about. By collecting litter along the way, you contribute to a cleaner environment and enjoy a rewarding outdoor experience.
  • Stay Engaged: Continue to find ways to support and maintain the cleanliness of our natural surroundings. Whether it’s by getting your group chat all on board for a fun trash clean up or pitching a few ideas to your boss to see if they’d like to sponsor a volunteering event. Every move counts.
  • Set a stewardship goal: Find a buddy! Staying on task can be tricky sometimes, but if you set a day every month where you dedicate a couple of hours to taking care of the trails, the waterways, and the life that depends on it: you’re certain to look forward to the change you can make on a regular basis.

Plant It Forward

Keeping the forests, parks, and waterways around Tehaleh clean is a task that requires the effort of each and every individual. By taking small, consistent actions, we can make a big difference for future generations. Let’s work together to ensure that the natural beauty of Tehaleh remains unspoiled for all to enjoy.

Remember, every piece of litter you pick up, every trail you help maintain, and every bit of waste you reduce contributes to a cleaner, healthier environment. It’s not just about the here and now—it’s about preserving our landscape and the natural legacy of Tehaleh for generations to come.

For more information on the parks and trails throughout Tehaleh, check out our website or come see the community for yourself by making an appointment today. Together, we can keep Tehaleh pristine and thriving.

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