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John Kellettt

John Kellettt

John Kellett

Clearwater Mills, LLC

John Kellett has worked on the Inner Harbor for more than 20 years and seen the negative effect pollution has had on the environment, economy and aesthetics of the harbor first-hand.

He was inspired to study the problem and when he discovered no good solutions on the market, he developed a solution to address it.

Kellett then formed Clearwater Mills LLC, based in Pasadena, which installed the Waterwheel Powered Trash Interceptor in May 2014 at the mouth of Jones Falls River, where it meets the Inner Harbor in Baltimore.

Kellett said that as much as 80 percent of the trash in the Inner Harbor comes from the Jones Falls watershed.

His invention uses the current of the water to power a machine that picks up the trash.

The amount varies, but in the 18 months since the wheel was installed, 300 tons of garbage have been collected.

“The trash wheel collects trash and debris at a fraction of the cost of other systems, and the biggest dividend it is paying is a cleaner harbor,” Kellett said.

Kellett now is working to develop machines for other locations, including some in Baltimore, as well as in Brazil, India and other countries.