Later, 3:19 p.m. Central Time: see first comment. It's kind of "funny" how the "law of large numbers" always seems to work out.
The camp was said to be about 50 acres (various sources: I have no idea the actual size of the area that needed to be cleaned up.
Wiki says that a cubic foot of topsoil weights 40 pounds.
So, let's do the math (with the usual disclaimer: I often make huge arithmetic errors).
A section is a mile by a mile, or 27,878,400 square feet; which divided by 640 acres = 43,560 square feet / acre. In one acre there would be 43,560 cubic feet of topsoil, but thinking that removing a full foot of topsoil might be excessive I went with 6 inches or half-a-foot of top soil. 43,560 square feet x 0.5 feet = 21,780 cubic feet, and multiplying that by 40 pounds (per cubic foot), one gets, 871,200 pounds of top soil (6 inches deep) per ace. At 50 acres that would be (50 x 871,200 = 43,560,000 lbs or about 44 million lbs, which is incredibly close to the stated figure in the article below, 48 million lbs.
I have not idea how they are cleaning up this area, but they had to move fast to beat the spring thaw, and my hunch is they simply moved in and bulldozed somewhere between six inches and 18 inches of topsoil across the 50 acres, loaded it into large gravel trucks, and disposed of the trash somewhere (which, of course, begs the next question). Idle chatter.
The Washington Times article is at this link: 48 million lbs of debris hauled away so far.
Cleanup crews have removed 48 million pounds of trash so far from the largest Dakota Access oil pipeline protest camp — and they’re not finished yet.
The North Dakota Department of Emergency Services said Tuesday that a Florida-based contractor hired at a cost of $1 million to clear trash, waste and other debris from the Oceti Sakowin camp has hauled 24,000 tons of garbage since protesters were evacuated Thursday from the area.
“Cleanup at the former #Dapl protest site is nearly complete. As of today, 48,000,000 pounds of garbage has been removed from this location,” NDResponse said in a late Tuesday post on Facebook.It is amazing how fast they got this cleaned up. Color me impressed.
Photo at the link:
Replace the Humvees and heavy equipment with horses, and this quickly takes me back to General George Custer at the Little Bighorn, which did not work out so well for the US Army. It's actually a pretty interesting photograph at so many levels.