Litter Causes Damages and Disposal Expenses

Miami's Community Newspapers

From the beginning of the Public Works Department, one of the main priorities was to clean litter from the City and enhance the landscaping. Many programs have been initiated through our “Keep Miami Gardens Beautiful” Division to fulfill this priority, such as “Swat A Litter Bug,” “Adopt A Road,” Beautification Awards, Community Beautification Grant, Tree Canopy Initiative, Volunteer Efforts, and Public Service Announcements.

After 10 years, we are proud of how far we have come in making the City aesthetically pleasing, not just for the residents but also for visitors alike. However, we still have a lot to do. I ask the community to continue to assist us in maintaining the “Keep Miami Gardens Beautiful” efforts.

Littering continues to occur daily all around the City. Research and experience have shown that litter is the result of individual behavior—by either choosing to litter or being careless in the handling of waste. Of course, once litter is on the ground it attracts more litter; even items as small as candy wrappers and cigarette butts can cause damage to our environment. The Public Works Department collects close to 10,000 bags of litter every year, which is a large disposal expense. We can minimize or eliminate litter and gain great savings to the City.

When litter is not picked up, wind and rain move the litter to our stormwater drainage system plugging up our drains and causing flooding. This litter also includes landscapers and residents alike blowing and sweeping yard waste into the drains. This act is a violation of our ordinance and a fine will be imposed. Many times this litter will be carried through the drainage system to the local waterways and in turn to our oceans contaminating the ecosystems killing fish and other wildlife.

I urge everyone to choose not to litter. Make the commitment now and remind others on why we do not litter. It takes one person to positively impact the behavior of others to improve the quality of life of the community where we can live, work, and play together.

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