SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann L. Schneider announced today that the Illinois Department of Transportation will conduct its annual Adopt-A-Highway spring cleanup along state highways starting today through April 27. The secretary is encouraging all Adopt-A-Highway partners to come together, clean up their designated sections of roadways throughout the state and tally the bags of trash they collect in support of Earth Day activities throughout the month of April.
“The Adopt-A-Highway cleanup days remind us of the mission of Earth Day and the need to protect the environment, but they also drive home the importance of keeping unsightly and often dangerous litter and debris from our highways,” Secretary Schneider said. “The hard work of the thousands of Adopt-A-Highway volunteers is always appreciated and never goes unnoticed. Especially this year, after the long, harsh winter made trash pickup a challenge on many state highways over the last several months.”
Launched in 1995, the Adopt-A-Highway program brings citizens and volunteer organizations into partnership with IDOT to pick up trash and keep Illinois roadsides clean. The program also educates and encourages people to stop littering. Through the efforts of more than 10,000 individual volunteers representing almost 1,700 groups across Illinois, more than 3,400 miles of Illinois roadways are cleaner, providing visitors and tourists a better impression of our state and lowering the cost of litter removal to taxpayers. Program participants typically collect and dispose of more than 32,000 bags of trash each year.
Earth Day is observed globally and has been celebrated annually on April 22 since 1970. Earth Day’s objective is to raise awareness about the importance of conserving natural resources and protecting the environment. The day is observed in more than 140 countries by some 200 million people.
For more information on the Adopt-A-Highway program, visit http://www.dot.il.gov/aah/default.html.