The world we live in is deteriorating day by day. Global warming, ozone depletion, poor waste management and pollution are the major causes of this impending disaster and, unless we reverse this trend, Earth as we know it will not exist for future generations.
The one issue that we can handle without any external help is waste management and waste reduction. Keeping our immediate surroundings clean should be the primary target. As citizens, we should ask ourselves: Why are we so apathetic towards cleanliness in our province? It is the duty of every person to ensure that they keep their city, town or village clean. We should work individually and as communities to reverse environmental waste and pollution.
The Northern Cape’s tourism brand positioning is that of a province of extremes, whether it be sports, nature or culture, and that is what we have become famous for over recent years. However, a visitor travelling through our province might argue that we have one serious self-inflicted challenge – the fact that many of our towns and destinations are dirty. As residents of this beautiful province, we must seriously reconsider our attitude towards our towns and destinations, and transform ourselves into agents of environmental cleanliness.
Keeping our cities clean is not really a choice; it is a moral responsibility. It is a fact that clean towns are the responsibility of municipalities, but it is also each and every citizen’s duty to contribute. When your city is clean, visitors will feel attracted to its many restaurants and outdoor adventures and, in that way, we present it in the best possible light.
Why should we clear our streets of trash?
Trash encourages insects and pests: Mice, rats, pigeons and flies all thrive on decomposing garbage. Dirty streets also allow insects and rodents free reign of open areas like parks, sidewalks and public courtyards. Many of these pests carry harmful diseases and can cause a city-wide epidemic. When you clear away debris, you confine rodents and insects to the landfill and discourage them from roaming the streets.
Trash turns away tourists: First-time visitors to filthy cities will take their hard-earned savings to a cleaner environment where they feel comfortable. In this digital age, visitors to your less-than-fair city can post photos of your local trash problem for all of the internet to see.
Trash lowers property values: Residents face challenges when they try to sell property that is surrounded by urban debris. Even if homeowners take care not to litter or leave trash lying around, loose garbage that their neighbours leave lying around or food wrappers discarded from the windows of vehicles can accumulate and discourage potential buyers.
Trash is a safety hazard: Just as a debris-filled roadway threatens your vehicle, a dirty street or sidewalk poses a risk to all passersby. Food-related waste can also grow mould and bacteria, and spread disease.
Trash clogs drains: During the rainy season, the combination of litter and water presents new challenges. Too much clutter in city gutters can create a major build-up in storm drains, leaving the streets filled with deep puddles. Make sure that all trash gets cleared from the streets on a regular basis to avoid clogged drains and flooded streets.
Trash pollutes natural resources: When people don’t dispose of their garbage properly, household items like hairspray or paint can cause an environmental problem. When toxins from residential trash seep into the soil, they can stall plant growth and even kill young, developing buds. Any wildlife that comes in contact with trash also risks injury, disease and death from human carelessness. Trash on beaches threatens the natural beauty of the area and the ecosystem.
A city-wide recycling programme will reduce the amount of trash on the streets, and it will also remind your residents that their choices affect those around them.
No matter the size of your city’s population or the square footage of your town, you’ll benefit your municipality, your residents and visiting tourists when you maintain your streets properly. To preserve your city’s image, call a street sweeper today.
Now that everybody knows the impact of trash, let’s show our love for our towns and cities by keeping them tidy. A clean town instantly looks appealing, and we all deserve to live in clean and hygienic spaces.
Towns and cities belong to all who live in them, so let us each play a positive role in keeping them clean and safe for all of us.