History of The Adopt-A-Highway (AAH) Program

The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) established the Adopt-A-Highway (AAH) program in 1988 in response to growing public concern regarding litter along the state's highways.

Administered by the Office of Beautification Programs, the AAH program is a collaboration between community volunteers and the NCDOT. Its purpose is to decrease the amount of litter on North Carolina's roadsides and improve the beauty and quality of the environment. This is accomplished by removing and recycling litter from roadsides and educating the public about the importance of proper trash disposal.

Since its inception in 1988, approximately 160,000 AAH volunteers across our state have joined our struggle to keep NC Clean and Green. On average Adopt-A-Highway volunteers pick up four million pounds of litter annually. Volunteers are encouraged to recycle and NCDOT provides special blue bags for this purpose. Many groups have used the proceeds from the metal they have collected as a source of revenue.

Call your local AAH Coordinator to discuss signing up. It doesn’t cost you any money and the NCDOT will put up your signs and supply you with safety vests, gloves and bags. All you have to do is pick up litter a minimum of four times a year (once every three months) along your two-mile section of roadway. Highly traveled roads may require more than the minimum four pickups per year. For more information call the NCDOT Beautification Programs at 1-800-331-5864 (NC only) or your local AAH Coordinator.