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Clean Earth Rover Collects Trash & Debris in Huntington Harbour

A “Roomba” for the water has been busy skimming trash in Huntington Harbour – sucking up bits of debris in hard-to-get places. Since the pilot program started last month, about 80 pounds of trash has been removed from the water twice a week – from plastic bottle to backpacks. Recently, there has been an increase in algae growth, and the Clean Earth Rover has been able to remove some of the growth along the docks as well.

City of Huntington Beach’s Environmental Services Manager Jim Merid is pleased with the pilot program. “The Clean Earth Rover is a new technology to treat an old problem,” said Merid. “Trash and debris in the Harbour have been a problem for many years, and this technology will help the City access locations that are inaccessible to marine vessels in the water or by Public Works staff,” he said.

Clean Earth Rover was started by two college students from Cincinnati’s Xavier College who had a passion for finding solutions for cleaning up ocean plastic in a cost-effective & efficient manner. Both co-founders, Michael Arens and David Constantine, live in Southern California.

Arens stated, “We have cleared over 400 gallons of debris from Huntington Harbour at this point, and continuously refining the Rover with new learnings as each Harbour is its own unique operating environment. This pilot has been an avenue to support those learnings, alongside our efforts to keep California waterways clean. Our team has been consistently proud of the work and outcomes so far, and we are eager to continue this effort to further drive our impact in the Harbour.”

The company aims to collect more than 500 gallons of debris before the end of the pilot program. The $10,000 Clean Earth Rover pilot program runs through April 2. The City will then evaluate the overall impact of the cleanup efforts.