The best way to resolve a serious litter problem is by changing behaviors and attitudes towards littering, and by creating litter awareness in the population. People are more likely to litter in already littered environments than in clean ones.
The second stage of the project will involve educating the public to become more litter-aware in an effort to reduce or eradicate trash in our town. It will also entail continued clean-up of trash and debris throughout the year.
- 80% of all litter is intentional.
- The most common types of litter are food and fast food litter and cigarette butts.
- 92% of people who litter do not believe they will be caught.
- People under 30 tend to litter more than people over 30.
- People litter more in areas that are already littered.
There are seven primary sources of litter:
- Household trash handling
- Dumpsters used by businesses
- Loading docks
- Construction and demolition sites
- Trucks with uncovered loads
Litter is blown about by the wind and traffic or carried by water. It moves until trapped by a curb, building or fence. Once litter has accumulated, it invites people to add more.
Why People Litter
Research has found that people litter because:
- They feel no sense of ownership, even though areas such as parks and beaches are public property
- They believe someone else—a park maintenance or highway worker, a business owner—will pick up after them
- Litter has already accumulated
Litter and Our Town
Last year, local, state, and federal governments spent more than $12 billion picking up litter. Tax dollars should be spent on more important services.
Clean communities also have a better chance of attracting new businesses and more tourists than those where litter is common.
Litter Prevention — You Can Help!
It takes a community to keep a town clean. Here are a few ideas you can share with your family and friends.
- DON’T LITTER! Set a good example for your children, friends and neighbors.
- Use a litter bag in your car instead of tossing it out the window.
- At home, secure the lids on your trash and recycling containers, especially on collection day.
- Secure loads and remove trash from the back of your pickup truck.
- If you smoke, NEVER throw your cigarette butts on the ground.
- Clean up after your dog. Carry a plastic bag when walking your dog.
- If you see litter, pick it up. If each person picks up one piece of trash each day, at the end of the year you will have picked up 365 pieces of trash!
- Business owners can provide trash receptacles at entrances and be sure their dumpsters are closed.
I promise to do my part to make and keep Wareham and Onset litter free.
I will throw my trash away and pick up trash when I see it.
I will tell my family and friends about Don’t Trash Wareham.