- Pedestrians or cyclists who do not use waste receptacles.
- Motorists who do not use car ashtrays or litterbags.
- Business dumpsters that are improperly covered.
- Loading docks and commercial or recreational marinas with inadequate waste receptacles.
- Construction and demolition sites without tarps and receptacles to contain debris and waste.
- Trucks with uncovered loads on local roads and highways.
- Household items scattered before or during a trash or recycling collection.
Litter is the result of too little attention to how waste is handled — the careless and casual handling of waste creates litter. Knowing more about the causes of litter and where it comes from is a good place to start in addressing litter prevention. One person, one business, one organization can positively affect the behavior of others in their community.No matter where litter starts, it moves. From streets and highways to parks and waterways. Wind and weather moves litter around a community, into the gutters, planted gardens, alleyways and parking areas. In one study, researchers found that 18% of all littered items end up in our streams and waterways as pollution. Roadside Litter Decomposition Chart
Why People Litter
Keep America Beautiful has determined that people litter for a variety of reasons. They feel no sense of ownership, even though areas such as parks and beaches are public property. They believe someone else-a park maintenance or highway worker- will pick up after them. People also litter in places where litter has already accumulated.
Who Is Littering?
There is no such thing as a single “littering type”. People of all ages and social backgrounds have been observed littering, … men and women, children, mature adults and all ages in between are equally likely to litter. Today’s litterer can no longer be described as a pick-up truck driving young man — today’s litterer may be you.Where do people litter? Research has identified locations where litter accumulates. The locations fall into these categories: special event venues, roadways and highways, high traffic and everyday locations and transition points.
What Can YOU Do?
Join your local litter prevention group. Adopt a Highway or participate in one or more of the local and regional clean-up events held each year and learn more about the litter prevention by visiting the Keep Virginia Beautiful (KVB) website or VDOT’s Adopt a Highway website
Community Contacts and Local Cleanup Programs
Get involved! Join one of the groups below to help conserve natural resources and keep your community clean. Or contact these groups to request information, cleanup opportunities, guest speakers, and resources specific to your community.
Charles City County
Denise Williams, Department of Development (804) 829-9217
Pam Cooper, Coordinator (804) 751-2227
Chuck Henley, Director of Solid Waste (804) 520-9372
Leigh Dunn, Environmental Planner (804) 556-5860
Stephen Chidsey, Chief of Public Works Operations (804) 365-6181
City of Hopewell
No contact information
New Kent County
City of Petersburg
Keep Petersburg Beautiful Committee
Contact Dept of Public Works – (804) 733-2415
Cathy Howland, Powhatan Cooperative Extension- (804) 598-5640
Prince George County
City of Richmond
Darlene Mallory, Coordinator – (804) 646-8325
Locality-specific litter prevention questions can be directed to area Recycling and Litter Prevention Program Managers.