De­fra cam­paign calls for an end to rub­bish ex­cuses

Western Daily Press (Saturday) - - News - KEITH ROSSITER [email protected]­erndai­ly­press.co.uk

SHOCK­ING im­ages of an­i­mals harmed by plas­tic rub­bish will help to drive home the mes­sage in a new cam­paign to crack down on lit­ter­ing.

Ad­verts will fea­ture im­ages of wildlife eat­ing and get­ting tan­gled in lit­ter, with typ­i­cal ex­cuses peo­ple give for drop­ping their rub­bish.

The cam­paign, us­ing the slo­gan “No more rub­bish ex­cuses”, was launched yes­ter­day by En­vi­ron­ment Sec­re­tary Michael Gove in part­ner­ship with en­vi­ron­men­tal charity Keep Bri­tain Tidy.

In a first for De­fra, the De­part­ment for En­vi­ron­ment, Food and Ru­ral Af­fairs, the cam­paign is sup­ported by com­pa­nies whose names are all too of­ten seen on the pack­ag­ing that lit­ters our streets, in­clud­ing Mars Wrigley Con­fec­tionery, Greggs and Mc­Don­ald’s.

The emo­tive im­agery shows the harm that lit­ter­ing can do.

The RSPCA re­sponds to 1,500 calls a year about lit­ter-re­lated in­ci­dents af­fect­ing an­i­mals.

Lit­ter­ing also brings a huge fi­nan­cial bur­den – keep­ing the coun­try’s streets clean cost lo­cal govern­ment in Eng­land al­most £700 mil­lion last year. Mil­lions of pieces of lit­ter are dropped ev­ery day in Eng­land.

The new cam­paign is urg­ing peo­ple to put their lit­ter in a bin, or keep hold of it and put it in a bin when they see one. Empty pack­ets and other lit­ter should al­ways be re­cy­cled, wher­ever pos­si­ble.

The bold ap­proach has al­ready earned the back­ing of some of the big­gest busi­nesses, with Mars Wrigley Con­fec­tionery, Greggs, Mc­Don­ald’s, Pep­siCo UK and Net­work Rail con­firmed as the first tranche of cam­paign part­ners.

Yes­ter­day the cam­paign went on dis­play in rail­way sta­tions na­tion­wide, in­clud­ing com­muter hubs such as Lon­don Eus­ton, Manch­ester Pic­cadilly and Birm­ing­ham New Street, as well as across part­ners’ so­cial me­dia chan­nels and on Clear Chan­nel’s So­cialite screens.

After launch, the cam­paign will fea­ture at till points in Gregg’s stores and at Cineworld cin­e­mas in a part­ner­ship with Pep­siCo UK.

Mr Gove said: The ‘Keep it, Bin it’ cam­paign is a bold state­ment of our in­tent to tackle the scourge of lit­ter­ing.

“Lit­ter­ing is an­ti­so­cial and un­ac­cept­able. It plagues our en­vi­ron­ment and poi­sons our wildlife.

“We know we won’t achieve this am­bi­tion by work­ing alone.

“That’s why I’m thrilled to see some of our big­gest com­pa­nies and the tire­less cam­paign­ers at Keep Bri­tain Tidy join­ing forces with us to help im­prove our pre­cious en­vi­ron­ment.”

Al­li­son Og­den-New­ton, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Keep Bri­tain Tidy, said: “As the largest con­sumers of food and drink on the go in Europe, the need for this cam­paign has never been greater.

“We are ur­gently ask­ing ev­ery­one to elim­i­nate lit­ter by keep­ing their pack­ag­ing with them when there isn’t a bin and bin it when there is one.

“We know the im­pact that lit­ter has on our en­vi­ron­ment, on wildlife and, ul­ti­mately, our oceans, where 80 per cent of the plas­tics found there come di­rectly from the land.”

This cam­paign will raise aware­ness with those peo­ple who still think it is ac­cept­able to leave their rub­bish any­where other than in a bin.

Ana Bap­tista, cor­po­rate af­fairs di­rec­tor at Mars Wrigley Con­fec­tionery UK, said: “We feel strongly that in­dus­try has a crit­i­cal role to play in de­liv­er­ing longterm be­hav­iour change by en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to bin lit­ter re­spon­si­bly.”

Hid­den dan­ger, p31

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