Tires. Appliances. Construction debris. Household trash. Furniture. Even hazardous materials. It’s hard to believe these are items you might run across on your next visit to a state forest or park.
More than 300 illegal dumps have been identified on Pennsylvania’s state forest and park lands – sites on public lands where thoughtless people have discarded tons of material that should have been recycled or dumped in a landfill. This garbage is not just an eyesore that ruins our scenic vistas. It affects tourism, damages the environment, and endangers wildlife and outdoor enthusiasts alike.
Fortunately, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) is aggressively trying to clean up these sites under the new Forest Lands Beautification Program. But it’s a big problem. We can only return our forests to their natural state if we work together to combine our time, energy, and resources to remove existing trash and stop the dumping in our forests.