Activist Swims Through Polluted Gowanus Canal To Raise Awareness

Photo Credit: gowanuscanalconservancy.org

Photo Credit: gowanuscanalconservancy.org

Christopher Swain is an activist with some admirable bravery.

The clean water advocate put on a yellow dry suit, earplugs, goggles, and applied water barrier cream to his face in preparation for a swim in the Gowanus Canal earlier today (April 22).

His mission was delayed for nearly three hours because some business owners weren’t willing to support him emerging from the water onto their property, according to PIX 11 News.

Eventually that was resolved, and Swain swam from the Flushing Tunnel to New York Harbor through waste, sewage, and other unmentionable filth. He was unable to swim the entire length of the canal as originally planned because of an approaching thunderstorm.

He’s thought to be the first to make this attempt in the Brooklyn canal.

Swain hopes his efforts, on Earth Day appropriately, will lead to a cleanup of the canal, making it safe for all New Yorkers to venture into.

He’s no stranger to stunts like this. In 2004, he also swam from one end of the Hudson River to the other (315 miles total), with the same activist intentions.

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