Edmonton - October 31, 2012 - Capital City Clean Up’s 2012 Litter Audit reveals a 9.4% reduction in litter on city streets from last year and a 42% reduction from the highest litter count three years ago.
“Changing a behaviour like littering can take a few years,” said Mayor Stephen Mandel, who thanked business and media partners for their support of Capital City Clean Up during a recognition event at City Hall. “These results show our efforts, combined with those of our business partners and Edmontonians, are making an important, lasting difference in creating a cleaner, safer, more livable Edmonton.”
The 2012 Litter Audit found an average of 15.7 pieces of large litter per site, down from 17.3 pieces in 2011 and 25 pieces from the original audit in 2007. Tobacco packaging continues to be the most common form of large litter, but the numbers are down from last year’s count.
“Seeing our overall litter numbers decrease yet again is great to see,” said David Aiken, branch manager of Community Standards. “We must continue to challenge ourselves as a city to reduce litter even further. These results show we are on the right path and where we can improve.”
Small litter counts remain low overall on city streets but cigarette butts remain the highest form of small litter, with the number found rising from 613 in 2011 to 788 in 2012.
Third-party consultant MGM Management conducted the audit, the fifth since 2007, by examining the same 123 sites throughout the city that were audited in previous years. Each site is analyzed and the collected litter is sorted into large litter (over 25 square centimetres) such as candy bar wrappers, tobacco packaging and cardboard or small litter (less than 25 square centimetres) such as cigarette butts, small paper, chewing gum and other items.
Over 1,000 Adopt-a-Block volunteers and 38 program partners worked with Capital City Clean Up in 2012. Program partners who participated in the Business Supporting Community program also made a noticeable difference in 2012 by contributing nearly $50,000 in funding to 11 local non-profit organizations’ clean-up efforts.