Revenue from the Bag Law is deposited into the Anacostia River Clean Up and Protection Fund (the Fund), a special purpose fund managed by DOEE. The moneys deposited into the fund are used to implement projects and programs working to protect and restore District waterways. For more information on Fund revenue and spending, read DOEE’s annual spending reports for the Fund.
Here are just a few of the exciting projects being implemented with funds from the Bag Law:
- Seven trash traps have been installed in the Anacostia River and its tributaries, which have collectively removed more than 75,000 pounds of trash from the District’s water bodies since they were installed.
- In 2011, DOEE partnered with the Alice Ferguson Foundation to develop a regional anti-littering campaign in Ward 7. The campaign is now being implemented District-wide.
- DOEE has the responsibility of providing a “meaningful watershed education experience” (MWEE) related to a stream or the Chesapeake Bay for students in the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) before high school graduation. Through a DOEE grant, nonprofit partners engage fifth grade classes in hands-on, educational experiences, linking the students to the Potomac River, Anacostia River and Chesapeake Bay watersheds. In FY19, 2,520 fifth-graders participated in the program.
- The restoration of Nash Run, a non-tidal tributary in the Ward 7 upper Anacostia watershed, includes natural channel design to assist with habitat improvement and pollutant removal from receiving waters downstream. A large trash capture device was also installed at the head of the restored reach. The project was completed in May 2016.
- RiverSmart Homes This program offers technical and financial assistance to homeowners that wish to control the amount of stormwater pollution leaving their properties. Homeowners in the District of Columbia are eligible for subsidies in the form of grants to install rain gardens, native vegetation, or permeable pavement. Other landscape enhancements, such as rain barrels and shade trees, are also available through the RiverSmart Homes program.
- DOEE purchases and distributes reusable bags to communities and organizations throughout the District, with a special focus on low-income and senior populations. This effort encourages District residents to minimize plastic bag usage and to transition to more environmentally-friendly reusable bags.