What if a million years ago a caveman finished off a soda and he tossed the glass bottle on the ground on the ground?
Chances are if you visited that spot today, the glass bottle would still be there, unless some Good Samaritan cleanup volunteer has picked it up!
Glass does not degrade very rapidly — and maybe it never will. So when glass is littered and not recycled, it has a very long lifespan on this Earth. What a waste.
Thank goodness, the only Neanderthals who have access to bottles to litter are the ones around these days!
We would like to invite all non-Neanderthals to join us next weekend for the first three area spring volunteer cleanups.
They are in Midway, Flemington and the East End of the county. On Saturday, those cities and the East End will have their Great American Cleanups for 2017. KLB provides all the supplies (garbage bags, safety vests, work gloves, even litter reachers, water) for the cleanups. Our cities partner with us by providing picnics after the cleanups for volunteers in appreciation of their efforts. We also provide Great American Cleanup T-shirts for all registered volunteers.
Each cleanup will begin at 8:30 a.m. at the Flemington City Hall, the Liberty Community Complex in Midway and I-95 at Highway 84 East for the East End groups. To register, contact Keep Liberty Beautiful.
While you are waiting for Saturday, here are a few other ways to stop Neanderthals in their litter tracks:
1. Commit to picking up one piece of litter every day. I read years ago that the average person supposedly passes by about 12,000 pieces of litter each day.
I wish I could find the source for that because 12,000 seems unbelievable. But, realistically we all do pass a lot of litter every day, so it should not be hard to find a piece or two to pick up. Just think.
With this one quick action, you could remove 365 pieces of litter a year. If a few thousand of us did this every day, the results could be incredible.
2. Set an example by not littering. Carry a litter bag in your car and hang on to litter until you find a garbage receptacle. Parents, set an example for your children. Children, set an example for your parents.
3. Share with others — your family, neighbors, co-workers — the proper way to dispose of litter.
4. Make sure your trash cans have good-fitting lids so litter cannot fall or blow out.
If you haul garbage or recyclable items to convenience centers for disposal, make sure your bags are tied off and that bags and containers are secured in your vehicle. Over half of our litter problem is caused by Neanderthals letting litter blow out of their vehicles. You can make a difference just by using a tarp on your truck.
5. Ask your neighbors to join you in cleaning up your street or neighborhood. "Adopting" that area can help reduce the amount of litter because people do litter less in areas that are maintained.
6. Encourage groups — civic clubs, youth groups, sports teams and church groups — that you and your family support to get involved in cleanup and recycling projects. Have your group "adopt a spot" and maintain it on a regular basis.
7. Look for ways to beautify your neighborhood and community. Neighborhoods that are maintained and attractive are littered less and research shows that they are usually safer, too.
8. In your workplace make sure that there are an adequate number of appropriately placed containers for garbage.
Make sure designated smoking areas have receptacles for cigarette butts, too. Cigarette butts can take up to 20 years to decompose. They are also disgusting.
9. At community and sports events, look for containers to dispose of snack wrappers and drink containers. Don’t just throw them on the ground. Where did we ever get the idea that that was okay?
Picking up litter makes a powerful statement to the Neanderthals among us that litter is not acceptable.
Help us fight litter this week and we may just make these litter Neanderthals extinct.