The Adopt-a-Road Program on Orcas is Launching This Summer

As a result of many concerned Orcas residents about the increasing amounts of litter on our roadside, the Orcas Adopt-a-Road program is about to launch! This program is a great example of community voices joining forces with existing organizations to create a sustainable program that will benefit everyone. After several meetings with members of ORS and Plastic Free Salish Sea, the program found it’s perfect home with Plastic Free’s existing Adopt-a-Beach program.  

Any resident on Orcas who wishes to become a road steward will be able to visit the Plastic Free Salish Sea website and enter the information about which road they wish to adopt. To see how this currently works for beaches, visit  https://plasticfreesalishsea.org/adopt-a-beach/. The Orcas Adopt-a-Road page will be live later this summer.

Participants in the Orcas Adopt-a-Road program can get supply bags, safety vests, and grabbers from ORS and will not be charged for the roadside waste they dispose of at ORS. Just bring your collected trash to the Transfer Station to be weighed and let them know you are a participant in the Adopt-a-Road program.

Benefits of Signing Up

If you’re wondering why you can’t just go pick up garbage without signing up, you can, but by signing up you’re helping us keep road litter free to dispose of.

“As a result of being able to report this information, the State renews our funding to keep the litter brought into ORS/The Exchange free to the public,” says Mark Ingman, San Juan County’s Solid Waste Program Coordinator. “[During] this current cycle the state inflowed over $32,000 to keep our litter cleanup efforts going in our county!”

That is a pretty good reason to sign up!

The collective visioning of this idea and making it manifest is a beautiful example of how a small community like ours can make a difference when individuals really care about our Mother Earth, and care about each other. Thank you ORS, Plastic Free Salish Sea, and everyone else who has had a voice in creating this! 

FAQ’s

What if someone else has already adopted the road I want to adopt? You can clean your adopted road as frequently (or infrequently) as you’d like

How old do I have to be to participate? Plastic Free Salish Sea requires every participant to be 18 years old or over.

When can I sign up and start picking up trash? You do not need to wait for their website to be live! Many people are signed up already and are actively working to keep our roadsides litter free. Email orcasroadcleanup@gmail.com and specify which road you would like to adopt as well as the supplies you will need (grabbers, vests, bags). The program will aim to collect GPS coordinates for your stretch of road so if you know them you can include that info as well.