Grass Not Garbage
Over the past months we have been litter picking. Unwelcome objects on the verges include cans, sandwich wrapping, crisp packets, wipes, plastic bottles, shredded plastic of all kinds, glass bottles, the list is long and it’s all single use. I don’t think we realised how bad it was until we got involved. However often we go out there’s plenty to collect.
The danger presented to wildlife and our pets is obvious – sharp ring pull and can edges and broken glass. Nationally the RSPCA have a call every 2 hours about an animal harmed and 69,000 animals die every year due to litter. The danger to us is becoming clearer as publicity highlights the scale of the problem of polluted waterways and oceans and the grim outlook for our children and grandchildren, if we don’t take big action now. So what can we do?
Leaves Not Litter
As far as litter in our area goes, TDC clears the public roads every 8 weeks. But they are not responsible for unadopted roads. We know there are already volunteers who litter pick regularly. But if anyone else would like to join in, Jim Lewthwaite at TDC (), will provide recycling and general rubbish bags, grabbers and hi-viz vests. Once collected, leave it at the roadside, contact him and he will arrange for collection. This has worked well for us.
Terracycle is a private recycling company that deals with hard to recycle waste like crisp and sweet packets, air fresheners, in fact all kinds of things. Local drop off centres are in public buildings or even private houses. To find them, look on their website, similarly if you feel you or your place of work could participate:
Trees Not Tins
The bigger picture for our environment is undoubtedly that recycling won’t solve the problem. We need to use less disposable packaging. According to Greenpeace 80% of the plastic in the sea comes from the land. We have to change our own habits. We may think one person can’t make a difference but we can start with small every day changes:
– Take our own cup for takeaway coffees.
– Stop buying bottled water and use a refillable bottle for when we’re on the go.
– Skip crisps and ready meals.
– Buy loose fruit and veg.
– Take our own bags to the shops.
– Return supermarket plastic bags from home deliveries.
We know we’re not alone in our concern for our beautiful North Downs
countryside and the wider environment and we wondered if you have ideas and would like to join us in making a difference together?
Check out our Facebook community:
> Looking After Woldingham’s Environment
We’ll be doing a monthly litter pick on the first Monday of the month, meeting at 10am on The Green. Do please come, and bring your car, so between us we can cover a wide area. We look forward to seeing you.
Please join us if you care about the environment in Woldingham and beyond.
This article is also available in The Woldingham Magazine, issue May 2019, page 39