PTRC Supports Legislation to Restrict the Sale of Foam Food Packaging

Trash at Chapel Point State Park

Every year, the Port Tobacco River Conservancy hosts a Potomac River Cleanup at Chapel Point State Park. This year’s cleanup is Saturday, April 14, and is a great opportunity for volunteers to make a difference in the community. Every year, foam packaging makes up a substantial portion of the trash we collect.

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam food packaging is a major component of the litter recovered during stream cleanups throughout Maryland’s waterways. Unlike other forms of packaging, EPS foam is impossible to fully clean up once it is thrown away. It is a petroleum-based product that does not biodegrade. Instead, it crumbles and breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces each time it is touched or disturbed. Once in the water, it will absorb 10 times more pesticides, fertilizers and chemicals than other kinds of plastic, increasing toxin exposure to fish and other aquatic animals, and potentially making its way into the food chain. It is not capable of being recycled in an environmentally effective or economically feasible manner.

PTRC supports a bill that has been introduced in the Maryland General Assembly to restrict the sale and use of EPS foam packaging in Maryland. Beginning January 1, 2019, HB 538 and SB 651 would prohibit food service businesses and institutions from serving food in EPS foam packaging (cups, plates, clamshells). The bill would also prohibit the retail sale of these products in the state. Grace periods for using up existing stock and state outreach programs would help businesses through the transition.

A 2017 study of retailers of varying sizes in Washington, D.C., after similar legislation was passed in 2016, found that retailers were able to offer other types of packaging at a comparable price, and did not experience ill effects due to the legislation.

Now is the time to encourage our legislators to reduce trash and litter pollution in our neighborhood streets, communities, and waterways, including the many Charles County streams, creeks, and rivers that flow to the Chesapeake Bay. Click here for contact information for Charles County Delegates Sally Y. Jameson, Edith Patterson, Susie Proctor, and C.T. Wilson. Click here for contact information for Senator Thomas “Mac” Middleton.

Buy Your Tickets for ChocolateFest

ChocolateFest is Friday, February 9.

7 to 11 pm
Greater Waldorf Jaycees Community Center
3090 Crain Highway, Waldorf
$50 per person, $475 for a table of 10

Music by GrooveSpan, real money gambling, raffles, silent auction, dancing, cake walk, and lots of chocolate!
Each ticket includes a free drink (beer, wine, or non-alcoholic beverage) and the Jaycees’ heavy hors d’oeurves:

  • Variety of egg rolls
  • Cheese and fruit tray
  • Vegetable crudites with dip
  • Spanakopita
  • Maryland crab balls with cocktail sauce
  • Roast round of beef and carver

As well as a dessert table with lots of chocolate treats, including flowing chocolate fountains.
Buy your tickets online using the PayPal button at right or call (301) 934-2025.

Don’t Miss Painter and Local Historian Don Zimmer on Thursday, January 18

Local historian and painter Don Zimmer returns to present his latest research, “Three Stories from the Port Tobacco River in the Mid-18th Century: Trade, the quest for religious freedom, and the slave trade.” Don will display four new paintings inspired by his research. Don’s presentation last year was standing room only! Complimentary beer, wine, soft drinks and light refreshments will be served. The program is free and open to the public.
Thursday, January 18, 6:30  to 9:00 p.m.
Historic Port Tobacco Courthouse
8430 Commerce St
Port Tobacco MD 20677

Join Us for Green Drinks at the Blue Dog Saloon

Blue Dog Port Tobacco MDJoin us for Port Tobacco Green Drinks at the Blue Dog Saloon, 7940 Port Tobacco Road, Port Tobacco MD 20677. Come learn what PTRC has been up to, make new friends, and just have fun. We will be there on the following Thursdays from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

  • November 30
  • December 21
  • January 25
  • February 22
  • March 22
  • April 26
  • May 24

Meet La Plata Mayor Jeannine E. James

La Plata Mayor Jeannine E. James

Thursday, November 16, 2017
6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Historic Port Tobacco Courthouse, 8430 Commerce Street, Port Tobacco

Please join us as we welcome La Plata Mayor Jeannine E. James. Ms. James will discuss the Town’s efforts to protect water quality and improve public spaces in the Port Tobacco Watershed. A brief question and answer session will follow.

The event will be free and open to the public. Complimentary snacks, soft drinks, beer, and wine will be served.

For more information contact ptrc@porttobaccoriver.org or call (301) 934-2025.

This Month’s Shoreline Cleanup Is Sunday, October 22

On Sunday, October 22, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., we will hold our next shoreline cleanup at Chapel Point State Park, 8160 Pisces Rd., Port Tobacco MD 20677. Meet us at the parking lot for the boat launch area, where we will provide bags, gloves, water, and snacks. Come out to enjoy the park and help make our river more beautiful.

Weather permitting, some of us will be taking our kayaks out after the cleanup. Feel free to join us even if you can’t participate in the cleanup.

August Shoreline Cleanup at Chapel Point State Park

Pictures from Saturday’s shoreline cleanup of the Port Tobacco River at Chapel Point State Park. It was a beautiful day on the river and our volunteers made a big difference. A park visitor who would not give his name pitched in by loading all the trash we collected into his truck for disposal. We also saw some interesting native plants — rose mallow, prickly pear, and the dreaded poison ivy.