Trash Wheel Saves Ocean From Baltimore's Trash Throwers

A new invention is helping to solve the long-term environmental crisis created by the type of people who throw their trash on the ground.


NSFW    BALTIMORE, MARYLAND — Although the Pacific Ocean takes the prize for most polluted ocean in the world, the Atlantic Ocean is not far behind. And much of the Atlantic's non-degradable trash seems to come from the American city of Baltimore, where people don't seem to care where they dump their trash.

But one Baltimore native came up with a smart way to trap mountains of trash before they float into the Chesapeake bay. Here are the details:

CNet reports that a new invention has been having great success in solving the problem of plastic trash that flows into the harbor of Baltimore city.

The inventor of the machine, former museum director John Kellet, said he came up with the idea when he started thinking of ways to mitigate the mountains of plastic trash that would flow into the harbor every time it rained.

Kellett combined a water wheel with the design for a hay baler to create Mr. Trash Wheel, a 15-meter machine weighing nearly 50 tons.

The Chesapeake River's current rotates the water mill, powering a system of pulleys that in turn run a large conveyor belt with rake-like "teeth" that scoop up floating soda cans, plastic bags, bottles, styrofoam plates, cigarette butts and other detritus.

Two long buoys help funnel trash toward Mr. Trash Wheel's maw and into a floating dumpster that's emptied by a small crew of volunteers.

Since launching in 2014, Mr. Trash Wheels has intercepted more than 1,5 million tons of garbage.

For times when the river isn't flowing fast enough, Mr. Trash Wheel also sports solar panels and batteries.

Kellett can turn on the pumps via his smartphone and check on his invention 24/7 via an online webcam.
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