For those planning on spending some time enjoying our city's island park this summer, you'll see a new addition to the beach...and it has a job. This week, the city announced BeBot, a robot that will pick up litter, bottles, cigarette butts, and more from Belle Isle Beach.

The robot is a collaboration between the City of Detroit, the Belle Isle Conservancy, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, CGLR Foundation, The Clorox Company, and Meijer. It's part of a larger initiative to clean up plastic throughout the Great Lakes.

It has the capability to cover 32,000 square feet an hour.

“Since 2017, the Belle Isle Conservancy has educated thousands on the dangers of single-use plastic, removed upwards of 40,000 pounds of littered plastic pollution from Belle Isle and its waterways, and collaborated with local artists and designers to reuse waste collected at our cleanups to create and exhibit visual narratives around sustainability,” says Genevieve Rattray, Director of Sustainability and Advocacy for the Belle Isle Conservancy. "We are excited to work in partnership with the City of Detroit, Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the CGLR Foundation to foster innovation and innovative technologies as we continue to protect and preserve our natural resources and make critical movement towards adopting the principles, practices and policies of a circular economy.” 

The BeBot will deploy on Earth Day later this month, and will also be on hand for community trash pick-up events through the summer.