Do you think it’s cool to get labeled as Litterbug in Public? No, right? Then why there is so much coolness around?
Think over your own answers to this question - When was the last time you littered?
According to a Canadian survey, around 75% of the people admitted that they have littered in the last 5 years. Do you want to become part of such a percentage 5 years down the line? Come on, be different.
What are we talking about?
Litter - Anything that is garbage or discarded stuff that is lying around us anywhere.
Littering - The act of leaving the litter around intentionally or unintentionally.
Litterbug - One who litters public places.
We find litter all the way around, on roads-highways-bridges, in rivers-oceans-lands, at parks-stations-open spaces, under subways, around our buildings, and almost everywhere. Perhaps, it is rare not to spot a litter each day we step out of our homes. It's not strange nowadays to see people who are clean freak at homes and litterbug in public.
What’s tempting in littering? Well, the first and most convenient thing is the thought of getting rid of the unwanted stuff in our hands eg. cigarette buts once did with smoking, chocolate wrappers when done with eating, travel tickets once got down at the destination. Littering has become the most convenient habit than locating a nearby trash bin.
What encourages littering? It’s our assumption that no one is watching us while we are littering. And we know we are not gonna suffer from a penalty and other consequences as we do not always belong to the place where we litter.
What’s the harm with littering? The harm is evident with the data, but which one cannot imagine when one thinks it’s just one small paper or one wrapper or one cigarette butt they are littering.
It’s visible all around us, in our oceans, on land and in air in form of pollution. Let’s see the below table and imagine which way we are contributing the harm?
This table is very little data on what extreme harms we are causing by our small ignorant acts of littering. And we shall very much seriously think about giving up our bad habit called 'Littering'.
“There is no such thing as 'away'. When we throw anything away it must go somewhere."
We need to accept that littering is endangering our planet and other species. By avoiding littering we are not only helping nature and other animals, but also ourselves, and our money which otherwise would need to be spent on dealing with the litter. Yes, many countries including ours are struggling with waste and littering issues as it needs a lot of resources and money to tackle them. And in this situation, it becomes our sole duty to support solving these issues by contributing to the smallest possible actions.
Not paying attention to the craving for littering, reporting the litter sites to the concerned authorities, spreading awareness, reducing our waste generation, processing the waste at its source, finding innovative methods in this field are a few of the very possible things an individual can try to do.
Next time when the thought of littering comes to your mind, stop and don’t be a litterbug! The simplest way is to carry a bag in which you can collect all your litter trash throughout the day and then empty it only when you spot a dustbin. That’s it, people, that’s it. It's a mindset change in the first place. Can we please start doing this smallest action?
Dear readers, do comment or share your actions and knowledge about littering at our social pages or on our email firstname.lastname@example.org and let's motivate more people not to become a litterbug.
Bharati Bastade Koot - #BBK
- an eco-warrior, humanist, minimalist who 'Writes for Impact', and a firm Believer in 'taking actions for the change that we want to see in the world'.