We are in the middle of the national Great American Cleanup effort, and hundreds of local residents already have joined to clean up more than 50 miles of our county. We will have hundreds more join in the next few weeks.
If you have not volunteered yet, I urge you to consider how you can make a positive difference for our community in a few hours on a Saturday morning.
Litter is ugly and nasty and can cause serious health and safety issues. It also affects how prospective businesses and visitors view our county. I hope you will consider getting involved in our volunteer cleanups this spring because your presence can make a significant difference.
Those cleanup volunteers on the roads actually are teaching tools for those who drive by — reminders to not litter. If you would like to be involved, check with your city hall to volunteer for the municipal cleanup day coming up or contact Keep Liberty Beautiful. Our goal is 1,000 volunteers this spring, so we need your participation.
While we are preparing for these cleanups, here are some tips for stopping the litter epidemic in its tracks:
1. Set an example by not littering. Carry a litter bag in your car and hang on to litter until you find a garbage receptacle.
2. Pick up one piece of litter every day, especially around storm-drain sewers. Anything going in these goes directly to our waterways.
3. Remind others of the proper ways to dispose of litter.
4. Make sure your trash cans have good-fitting lids so litter cannot fall or blow out. If you transport garbage or recyclable items to area convenience centers for disposal, make sure that your bags and containers are secure in your vehicle. You can make a difference just by using a tarp on your truck. By the way, it’s also the law.
5. Ask neighbors to join you in cleaning up one area where litter accumulates. “Adopting” that area can help reduce the amount of litter because people do litter less in areas that are maintained.
6. Encourage groups to become 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.
8. Make sure that there are an adequate number of appropriately placed containers for garbage disposal in your workplace. Make sure that designated smoking areas have receptacles for cigarette butts, too. I have a limited number of free, plastic ashtrays; call 880-4888 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, consider setting up recycling containers for recyclable items, like plastic bottles, aluminum cans, paper and cardboard. And make sure that the tops and side doors of business dumpsters are closed properly so litter cannot fall or blow out.
9. If you own or work at a construction or hauling business, keep the trucks covered when transporting materials. Have an adequate number of garbage containers accessible for workers. Use fencing around construction and demolition sites to prevent debris from blowing into other areas.
10. At 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 is OK?
We can all make a difference at home, at work and throughout our community. Together, we can stop litter in its tracks!
Nominations still open for Win-dex Awards
Don’t forget — we still are taking nominations for Win-dex Awards for attractive businesses of the quarter through Tuesday. Nomination forms are available at the KLB office, 9397 E. Oglethorpe Highway in Midway, or at the Liberty County Chamber of Commerce office, 425 W. Oglethorpe Highway in Hinesville. You also can email your nomination information to email@example.com.