Local authorities and fast food restaurants have come together to fight the scourge of people throwing litter out of their vehicle.
This year’s Love Essex campaign highlights the penalties people can face by throwing litter from their car - from fixed penalty notices of up to £150, to fines of up to £2,500 plus the 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 humorous video has also been produced as part of the group’s attempt to spread the message on social media.
On Thursday 29 August, Andre Bateman of Maldon was convicted in Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court for littering a cigarette butt from his vehicle in Parkway, Chelmsford. He was fined and ordered to pay costs which came to £757.53.
Additionally, Michael Cox of Chelmsford was also convicted in Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court for smoking in a Hackney Carriage and littering a cigarette butt. He was fined and ordered to pay costs totalling up to £803.71.
Keeping Essex clean and tidy costs the tax payer over £17 million 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.
Councillor Rose Moore, Cabinet Deputy for Recycling and Ecology says: “This year, the anticipated cost of keeping Chelmsford clean and tidy will be around £1.4 million. This is throwing money away which could be put to far better use elsewhere.
“Every day we witness the negative impact of litter on local wildlife and habitats. The relentless destruction of ocean ecosystems has been brought to light in powerful documentaries such as Blue Planet. So much of our detritus - bottles, food packaging, straws, cans, cups – is wind-blown or enters our inland waterways, eventually turning up on our coasts. Every one of our actions has a consequence. It’s vital that we take collective responsibility for our environment, working together to change our behaviour and end littering.”
Huw James, Managing Director of KEFCO Sales Limited which is a KFC franchise, said: “I am proud to be a part of this campaign and to help spread the message to customers who visit my restaurants. When it comes to eating food on the go, we want to encourage all litter to be disposed of responsibly. That’s why, together, KFC and McDonalds will be applying 300,000 reminder stickers to our packaging during this campaign.”
To find out more about this campaign and how to report someone littering from a vehicle, visit www.loveessex.org/binit.
Friday 13 September 2019.