Could a recycling bill help keep bayous cleaner?

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Tons of trash is filling up our bayous and dirtying the water. Now there's a plan that could help you make money, and keep our bayous clean.

They say necessity is the mother of invention which forced the Buffalo Bayou Partnership to build a giant trash vacuum boat.

"We're out here 5 days a week, Tuesday through Saturday," said Robby Robinson with the Buffalo Bayou Partnership.

Last year alone, Robinson and his crew picked up 250 dump trucks worth of trash in just the Buffalo Bayou, most of it plastic bottles.

"It's pretty much a never ending job. We get it clean, then it rains, and we start all over," Robinson said.

Mike Garver says he has a solution -- a state wide bottle recycling program where each bottle will have a 5 cent deposit essentially, incentivizing recycling.

"Drink containers will virtually disappear from our streets, our streams, and the beaches of Gulf of Mexico," said Garver.

Supporters the only way to reduce bottle waste is to get a Recycling Bill through the legislature, but past efforts haven't gone far, and this year, at best, it's an uphill battle.

In past years, the state's beverage and retail industries have vigorously opposed such bills, calling the proposed bottle deposit. A tax and across the country, only 10 states currently have similar bottle deposit laws in the books. But Garver and others with clean water Texas are undeterred by the tough odds.

"It doesn't have to be here, it doesn't have to be here. There are better ways to deal with it," Garver said.

"Other than throwing it in the water," we asked.

"Yes - other than throwing it in the water," said Garver.

They say incentivizing bottle recycling is the only real shot of reducing waste in our water ways and make Robinson's job a little easier.

"I would love a bottle bill, it would be a whole lot less work," said Robinson.

Meanwhile, they're always looking for volunteers to help pick up some trash. null
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