Tahoe’s beach-cleaning robot is back in action with expanded role
LAKE TAHOE, Calif./Nev.— The League to Save Lake Tahoe and ECO-CLEAN solutions are kicking off the 2023 summer season by expanding their robot-powered, beach-cleaning initiative to cover entire beaches in Lake Tahoe.
The BEBOT-an all-electric, solar, and battery-powered, sand-sifting robot-completed it’s first ever full cleanup of a private beach in Lake Tahoe, combing through Tahoe Beach Club’s shoreline at Stateline, Nev.
More full beach cleanings at sites around the lake are on tap for the coming months, and a second machine will be added to the robot fleet.
“Last year’s pilot project showed that the BEBOT can act as the last line of defense against beach litter, especially plastics, before they pollute Lake Tahoe,” said chief strategy officer for the League Jesse Patterson. “Innovative technologies combined with people power can help protect the lake until we solve the litter problem all together.”
During the 2022 pilot project, the BEBOT cleaned 72,000 square feet across 11 private and public beaches, collecting 4,500 pieces of litter, the vast majority of them plastic.
Cleanup efforts with stewardship-focused partners like The Beach Club are a testament to the commitment of nonprofits and local businesses to preserve the lake’s health and beauty.
Over 200 pieces of small litter and organic debris were unearthed during the first full clean up at Tahoe Beach Club, the majority being small plastic pieces, styrofoam debris, bottle caps, and cigarette butts.
The data collected from the BEBOT’s cleanups will also be used to estimate the amount of trash lurking beneath the sand across the basin, and to support the League’s advocacy for litter prevention policies, such as the City of South Lake Tahoe’s ban on plastic water bottles.
The League invites residents and visitors to help create a litter-free Tahoe by taking part in the 10th annual “Keep Tahoe Red, White, and Blue” beach cleanup from 8-11:30 a.m. Wednesday, July 5, at locations all around the basin.
For details and to register, visit keeptahoeblue.org/events.
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