“It’s shocking to see how much trash has accumulated under what appears to be such a pristine lake,” said Matt Levitt, founder and CEO of Tahoe Blue Vodka, which has contributed $100,000 to the cleanup.
They found no trace of a mythical sea monster, no sign of mobsters in concrete shoes or long-lost treasure chests, AP reports.
But scuba divers who spent a year cleaning up Lake Tahoe’s entire 72-mile (115-kilometer) shoreline have come away with what they hope will prove much more valuable: tons and tons of trash.
In addition to removing 25,000 pounds (11,339 kilograms) of underwater litter since last May, divers and volunteers have been meticulously sorting and logging the types and GPS locations of the waste.
The dozens of dives that concluded this week were part of a first-of-its-kind effort to learn more about the source and potential harm caused by plastics and other pollutants in the storied alpine lake on the California-Nevada line.
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