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Roadside litter week of action

Published Thursday, 10 May 2018

Keep Scotland Beautiful roadside litter campaign poster

We are hoping everyone will join us in backing the Week of Action on Roadside Litter campaign which gets underway this weekend.

The council’s Grounds Services and Keep Scotland Beautiful are working closely on a range of projects and events including the roadside litter campaign which runs from Saturday 12 to Sunday 20 May.

Roadside litter is a serious and growing issue affecting all roads including motorways, trunk roads, rural and residential streets.

Litter levels are at their worst in a decade despite litter campaigns and education initiatives in recent years.

 More than 50 tonnes of litter is collected from Scottish motorways every month. It is difficult to clean and puts staff at risk which makes prevention all the more important.

Roadside litter is a growing issue in Scotland, that impacts on road safety, environmental quality and the economy. Did you know that:

  • 82.8% of motorways and A class roadside verges recorded a presence of litter, with one in 12 classed as 'significantly impacted' (LEAMS 2016-17)
  • More than half of Scottish adults have seen someone throw litter from a vehicle and not pick it up

Roadside littering is not considered to be acceptable. In fact:

  • 68% of Scottish adults think there is a problem with the amount roadside litter
  • 88% of Scottish adults agree that roadside litter creates a negative impression of Scotland

The types of roadside litter noticed most are drinks bottles/cans (63%) and food/fast food packaging (61%), with takeaway cups (30%), plastic and paper bags (33%) and cigarette related litter (31%) also significantly noticeable. It seems that roadside litter comes, unsurprisingly, from people eating, drinking and smoking on the road.

Alistair McKinnon, the head of the council's Facilities, Waste and Grounds Services, said: “We will be tackling areas that are affected by road side litter and this follows on from our spring clean of a range of similar locations back in March this year. We would appreciate the public’s assistance in taking home litter when a bin is not available.”

If you are fed up seeing litter at the side of the road please spread the message: Give your litter a lift home