John Kellett’s water wheel has already pulled thousands of pounds of trash out of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and could be the solution for cleaning trash pollution in waterways around the world.
Credit: Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore
The river’s current provides power to turn the water wheel, which lifts trash and debris from the water and deposits it into a dumpster barge. When there isn’t enough water current, a solar panel array provides additional power to keep the machine running.
The 500 tons of trash collected includes more than 8.5 million cigarette butts that, lined up end-to-end, would stretch from Baltimore to Ocean City, said Adam Lindquist, director of the Waterfront Partnership’s Healthy Harbor Initiative.
Mr. Trash Wheel is the first of its kind in the nation.It is expected to gather an additional 5,000 pounds of trash per month.