DC Waters Floatable Debris Unit Recognized for Environmental Stewardship

December 21, 2011

The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water) was recently awarded the Anacostia Community Boathouse Association (ACBA) Stewardship Award, recognizing the continuous efforts of its Floatable Debris Unit (also called the skimmer boat crews) in keeping the Anacostia River free of trash and debris.

The ACBA Stewardship Award is given annually to individuals or groups who have made significant contributions in the areas of environmental and site stewardship, awareness, and education. The winners of this award demonstrate a commitment to enhancing and improving the environmental health of the Anacostia watershed.

"The Boathouse community appreciates DC Waters commitment to improving the quality of our waterways for everyone," said ACBA President Jennifer Ney. "The skimmer boat crews help keep the Anacostia River navigable, as well as safe and enjoyable. This work is critically important to maintaining Boathouse operations and helps to ensure our community-based and scholastic programs can practice and compete on the river safely without damage to equipment nor risk to athletes."

DC Water General Manager George S. Hawkins, along with members of the Floatable Debris Unit, accepted the award. "In all types of weather conditions our Team Blue crew members tend to the Anacostia River, removing more than 400 tons of debris a year, helping improve the health and safety of the river," said Hawkins. The base of operations is on the banks of the Anacostia River, where two crews of large skimmer boats patrol the river eight hours a day, five days a week, removing logs, trash and other large objects. They often work weekends, too, clearing the river before big events.

According to Ney, the Boathouse hosts 10 to 12 regattas a year, and DC Waters crews sweep the river for each one, keeping the races safe and fair. "Its a tremendous benefit. The skimmer boat crews are making the river more enjoyable for thousands of people each year."

The awards ceremony took place on December 18 at the Anacostia Community Boathouse.

Media Contacts:
Pamela Mooring
External Communications Manager
DC Water

Jennifer Ney
President, Anacostia Community Boathouse Association
202-742-7380 (office)
202-957-0078 (cell)

About The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority
The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water) is an industry-leading authority of District government that provides drinking water and wastewater collection and treatment for a population of more than 600,000 residents, 500,000 employees and 16.6 million annual visitors in the District of Columbia. DC Water also treats wastewater for a population of 1.6 million in Montgomery and Prince Georges counties in Maryland, and Fairfax and Loudoun counties in Virginia. The Authority operates the worlds largest advanced wastewater treatment plant, with a capacity of 370 million gallons per day and a peak daily capacity of more than a billion gallons. DC Water service area covers approximately 725 square miles.

About Anacostia Community Boathouse Association
The Anacostia Community Boathouse Association (ACBA), a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization run solely by volunteers, is dedicated to safe and environmentally responsible recreation on the Anacostia River through the establishment of a community boathouse located at 1900 M Street in Southeast Washington, D.C. ACBA provides opportunities for non-motorized recreational water activities, such as rowing and paddling, through its ten member organizations, which include four high schools, a university, four community-based clubs, and an environmental organization. In partnership with the D.C. Government, ACBA is working to sustain and improve its boathouse facilities for the diverse communities along the Anacostia River and in the greater metropolitan Washington area.