Operation Clean Sweep

  • Published
  • By Airman Raina Dale
  • JBER Public Affairs

During the week of May 6-10, 2024, units across Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson participated in Operation Clean Sweep; an installation-wide initiative to recover the base from debris and trash after a long winter. 

“We as humans-not maliciously-drop, lose, or impact the environment in many ways,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Christopher Taylor, an Operation Clean Sweep team lead and section chief of heavy repair for the 773  d Civil Engineer Squadron. “When we mix our impact with weather and wind, our mark is expanded over large areas.”

Operation Clean Sweep has been in planning since January of this year through, done in coordination with the Air Force, Army, Air and Army National Guard units, Aurora Housing, the Chamber of Commerce, Adopt-a-Highway, and other community partners to provide a unified effort to reduce our environmental footprint. 

“I think it is important to maintain a sanitary and clean work environment,” said U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. James Pomeroy, 517th Aircraft Maintenance Unit section chief. “We all should take pride in our work areas and our base.”

With the snow melting, the community of JBER has been able to make a productive impact on the environment in conjunction with the local populace, Taylor said.

The base cleanup was divided into sections in which certain units dispersed and unpolluted. The majority of the areas were centered around people’s work centers, but not limited to just their own work area. Programs such as Adopt-a-Highway had a specific unit assigned to a designated highway where they cleaned the road of debris and trash. 

This operation strengthened the partnerships between the city of Anchorage, local community businesses and residents all while creating a positive impact on our natural resources by maintaining our environment, said Taylor. 

“Operation Clean Sweep gave us a chance to meet new people and bond over a common act,” said Taylor.  “It signifies that Spring is here, and life is beginning to emerge once again in Alaska. We are truly blessed to live in this beautiful state."