Love Essex campaign puts pressure on litter louts

Local authorities and fast food restaurants have come together to fight the scourge of people throwing litter out of their vehicle.

Love Essex Heart

This year's Love Essex campaign highlights the recently increased fines that people throwing litter from their car face from fixed penalty notices of up to £150 to fines of up to £2,500 plus costs upon conviction in a court.

Banners will be displayed at fifteen KFC and three McDonald's drive through restaurants and take-away packaging will also be branded with "Can you afford to throw £150 away?" A video has also been produced as part of the group's attempt to spread the message on social media.

Keeping Essex clean and tidy costs the taxpayer over £17million a year and with decreasing local authority budgets year on year, the demand and pressure put on providing services such as street cleansing continues to rise.   

Cllr Louise Pepper, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Green Issues at Uttlesford District Council, which is part of the Love Essex group, said: "This year, the anticipated cost of keeping Uttlesford clean and tidy will be around £400,000 and picking up other people's litter is an expensive part of that. It is literally throwing money away which should be spent on more important things.

"We have seen the negative impact of litter on nature and wildlife, as well as in our oceans on programmes such as Blue Planet. A lot of that litter such as bottles, food packaging, straws, cans and cups, has been wind-blown from further inland, eventually turning up on our coasts. It is now even more vital we all do whatever is necessary to save our environment, protect our wildlife and eradicate the littering bad habit."

If you see someone throwing litter from their vehicle, please report it to Uttlesford District Council by using the online form at www.uttlesford.gov.uk/litter. Remember to include the registration number plate and other information such as the time, date and location of the incident.

To find out more about Love Essex and this campaign, visit www.loveessex.org/binit.

20 September 2019