The average American produces five pounds of trash each day, which plays a part in the nearly $11.5 billion spent on litter clean-up in the U.S. each year. With more than 50,000 miles of interstates and state routes across Georgia, there are many places litter could pile up and potentially cause damage if not disposed of properly.
The Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) recently launched its new anti-litter campaign, Keep It Clean Georgia. The statewide initiative is focused on preventing and eliminating litter by motivating Georgians and Peach State visitors to not only avoid littering in the first place, but also play an active role in protecting and maintaining the stunning views and rich landscapes that make Georgia the heart of the South.
“We are excited to support Georgia DOT’s efforts with the Keep It Clean Georgia campaign and encourage all Georgians to do their part to help the Peach State remain a place we are proud to call home,” said Georgia Governor Brian P. Kemp. “As our state continues to grow and prosper, let’s take the necessary steps toward eliminating litter, protecting our environment, and ensuring a bright and beautiful future for Georgia.”
Keep It Clean Georgia aims to stop the problem before it starts by educating Georgians on the impact litter has on roadway safety and aesthetics, the environment and economy, and encouraging them to take action to ensure that litter finds its rightful place. Campaign creative further reminds Georgians that littering is inappropriate everywhere, moving beyond the state’s roadway system to highlight images of Georgia’s natural beauty from the mountains to the coast.
“The Keep It Clean Georgia campaign is intended to motivate Georgians to think twice about throwing trash where it doesn’t belong and to take an active role in preserving Georgia’s beauty,” said Russell McMurry, P.E., Georgia DOT Commissioner. “Whether your home is a wide-open countryside or in one of Georgia’s bustling city centers, litter is everyone’s problem and as a community we can work together to keep our beautiful state clean and litter-free.”
Through Keep It Clean Georgia, Georgia DOT is partnering with individuals, businesses, environmental organizations and state agencies like the Georgia Department of Economic Development and the Keep Georgia Beautiful Foundation to emphasize the importance of litter prevention and highlight the role teamwork plays in maintaining Georgia’s natural beauty.
“The Peach State is one of the nation’s top travel destinations and welcomed a record 152.3 million domestic and international visitors in 2019. The many industries that call Georgia home take pride in our state, and our economy depends on all of us working together to ensure our breathtaking mountains, serene tranquil coast and picturesque small towns remain the beautiful places visitors and residents know and love,” said Georgia Department of Economic Development Commissioner Pat Wilson. “By putting the tools and information from Keep It Clean Georgia to good use, we not only support Georgia DOT in eliminating litter across the state, but also put our best foot forward as we welcome visitors from around the world.”
Georgians can join in the fight against litter today by:
- Securing litter in their cars with compact cans or trash bags;
- Bringing reusable bags to the grocery store or farmers market;
- Utilizing refillable water bottles and coffee mugs;
- Ensuring outdoor trashcans have tight-fitting lids to prevent garbage from being spread by weather or animals; and
- Setting a positive example by disposing of trash properly and encouraging others to do so as well.
“While the health of the environment has continued to become a larger area of focus globally, there is still more that can be done to make a positive impact right here in Georgia,” said Natalie Johnston-Russell, Executive Director of the Keep Georgia Beautiful Foundation. “Over the past 42 years, the Keep Georgia Beautiful Foundation has worked to promote a litter-free Georgia and we are thrilled to have Georgia DOT and Keep It Clean Georgia join the cause in order to make this shared mission a reality.”
To learn more about Keep It Clean Georgia and the role you can play in helping eliminate litter statewide, visit www.KeepGAClean.com.