Our mission is to promote litter control, to keep up with the latest developments in litter control methods, and to disseminate information concerning litter control to the general public.
Litter is waste products that have been improperly disposed, without consent, or in an inappropriate location. Litter can also be used as a verb, to litter is to leave items, often made by man, such as aluminum cans and paper cups, food wrappers and cardboard boxes, on the ground and let them remain there indefinitely, or for other people to dispose them off.
Sometimes, hazardous and large items of rubbish, including tires, electronic appliances, batteries, and large industrial containers, are disposed in isolated areas, such as national forests or other public lands.
Litter is an environmental problem that has a significant human impact. Litter can remain in the environment for a long time before it is decomposed and transported to the oceans. Litter can impact the quality of your life.
With 4.5 trillion cigarettes being thrown away each year, cigar butts are the most polluting item in the world. There are many estimates of the time it takes for cigarettes butts to be completely degraded. They can take anywhere from five to 400 years.
Apart from intentional littering, nearly half of the litter found on U.S. roads is accidental or unintentional litter. This includes trash that has fallen off garbage collection vehicles, pickup trucks, and recycling vehicles. Higher litter rates are associated with factors such as population density, traffic density, and the proximity of waste disposal sites.
It is possible to illegally dump hazardous waste due to the high costs associated with dropping material at designated locations. Some of these sites charge a fee to deposit hazardous material. Access to facilities nearby that can accept hazardous waste could discourage their use. Inadequate knowledge of laws regarding hazardous waste disposal can lead to improper disposal.
A study done by VROM in the Netherlands found that 80% of people believe that everyone leaves litter on the streets. The litter that is left behind by people between the ages of 12 and 24 years old is more than that of an average person (Dutch, Belgian). Only 18% of litter-makers are older than 50. A 2010 survey in the United States found litterers over 55 in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont at a rate of less than 5%. According to the same observational study, 78% of litterers were male.
Littering behavior can be caused by negligent or lenient law enforcement. Other factors include economic, entitlement, and inconvenience. According to a survey, Pennsylvania had the highest number of illegal dumps. This report also mentions the inability to collect curbside trash or recycle, a lack of enforcement and habits as possible causes. More littering is encouraged by the presence of litter.