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Garbage deal offers chance to clean up plastic

15 Mar 2020
Re: Trash talk set aside as Niagara Falls, Region come to terms on garbage collection, March 10

Niagara Region's agreement with Niagara Falls to hire an external consultant to review waste collection practices is an opportunity to look at better ways to keep plastic off the streets, out of the oceans and our Great Lakes.

A large part of the problem is plastic escapes the waste stream, at the dump site bags rip and blow against the fence and over it. The second problem is the wind blowing plastic out of the blue boxes and into the streets.

The few of us, the litter pickers, see plastic in the streets every day, and put it into the blue litter barrels. Some plastic comes from careless littering and some from plastic escaping the blue boxes.

Clear plastic blue bags with draw strings or large blue boxes with flop open lids would be good alternatives to include in the review of collection practices.

This study is an opportunity to look at a practice that could, in some small way, reduce plastic in the oceans.

The Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority floodplain study of Walkers Creek shows how many street storm gutters empty into Walker's Creek and Beamer's Creek. It was a clear picture of how litter in the streets means plastic in the oceans.

Bruce Timms
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