The Spearhead Group is pleased to announce the launch of “Project Earth”. Our team launched an initiative which includes a series of shoreline cleanups and an educational program as a part of our commitment to restore and protect Burlington Island and the Delaware River for us and future generations. Burlington Island is a 300-acre river island with an artificial lake called Burlington Island Lake which is situated on the Delaware River and belongs to the City of Burlington and to the Board of Island Managers.
The island’s first inhabitants were the Lenapehoking People, and its original name was Matennecunk island, which means Island of Pines. In the 17th century, the first European settlement was established on the island and on 1682 Burlington City was given the title to the island.
Although the island has not been inhabited since the 1970s, its shores are affected by human activity in an indirect and constant way. Trash floating in the river, especially plastic waste, gets trapped in the island shores, polluting this beautiful natural area, and creating a risk of releasing micro-plastics into our rivers which lead to the oceans.
When Robert Catalano, Chief Innovation Officer and Co-founder at The Spearhead Group first came across Burlington Island, which is located close to our main office in Yardley, Pennsylvania, he saw an opportunity to give back to the local communities and put our core values into action.
Patricia Burguete, Head of Global Sustainability Strategies said “our pilot cleanup was a great opportunity to see firsthand how human actions, or lack of action, can turn useful – even valuable – items into harmful trash. Every time we have a single use plastic in our hands, we can decide whether it becomes something that can be reused, properly recycled, or just thrown away, with the potential of becoming harmful to the environment.” The Spearhead Group plans to use what we have learned in this first event to plan for ongoing clean-up and educational activities on Burlington Island.
This program was made possible thanks to the support of Burlington citizens and members of the Board of Island Managers, particularly Karen Robbins, Joe Abate, David Babula, and Angela Wenger. We had the privilege of having a Cherokee Medicine Man give an American Indian blessing to our project, accompanied by two others, in representation of the Native Americans who were the original dwellers of Matennecunk Island.
The Spearhead Group is excited about the possibilities that Project Earth can bring. These activities allow us to not just focus on sustainability, but to become engaged and set up an example of doing the right thing for our planet. Stay tuned for updates and information about how you can help preserve Burlington Island and check out our video!