Garbage is growing along banks of Iowa River - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Garbage is growing along banks of Iowa River

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) -

Garbage is piling along the banks of the Iowa River, and an Iowa City woman says a recycling facility is the reason why.

Anne Hansen walks her dog everyday along the Iowa River trail down Highway 1 West and Benton Street in Iowa City.

Hansen describes the riverbanks near City Carton Recycling as loaded with litter.

"I just couldn't not say anything any more because it really is littering into our river," said Hansen. "As I was going over the bridge and I looked down and literally just a whole bunch of trash trickling into the river.

She says the bounty of bags and clumps of cans are whipping in the winds coming right from City Carton Recycling, and the company admits it.

Russ Knocke is the public affairs director for the company based out of Arizona.

Knocke says they are working to fix the problem.

He says transients sometimes enter their property, sort through recycled goods looking for valuable items, resulting in recycled debris being scattered in areas along the riverbanks.

He says strong winds blew some of that recycled material off their property, so that hasn't helped in the situation either.

"As soon as we became aware of the matter, we responded by attempting to collect any items we could which we believed were dispersed by winds from our property," said Knocke in a statement.

City Carton Recycling is a recycling facility for businesses and the community, but by looking at all the trash, Hansen says it might be doing more harm than good.

"Very frustrating," said Hansen. "I thought to myself, do I want to bring my recycling to the recycling center? Is it going to end up in the river? What's worse putting it in a landfill or having it go into the river?"

She says she's noticed the mess for a few months and would like to see the City Carton Recycling put up a fence to stop the recycled materials from blowing.

She's also like to see the company be responsible for cleaning it up.

Knocke says they've been working with Iowa City leaders, and putting up a fence could be an option, but he says that could also create more problems.

"I think we're better than that," said Hansen. "I don't think we should allow trash to just spill into our river. So I think Iowa City definitely needs to make a change to keep the trash out of the river."

Knocke says they do apologize.

"We regret any inconvenience this situation may have caused our neighbors or community. We will continue to work with city officials on the issue, and we remain deeply committed to keeping Iowa City clean and beautiful," Knocke said in a statement.

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