No one likes it. Everybody produces it. And it gets everywhere.
Real trash talk:
- The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which is basically a massive pile of trash in the Pacific Ocean, is growing faster than expected, and is approximately 1.6 million square kilometers in size – that’s more than double the size of Texas!
- Trash pollution runs into rivers and creeks, and contaminates ground water, which local cities typically use as a public water source.
- When waste is not collected, the frequency of illness (such as diarrhea) doubles and acute respiratory infection (which is linked to the burning of waste) is six times higher.
What can you do to help?
- Recycle or donate any items that may be reusable, such as old electronics, clothes, and vehicles, to prevent it from being dumped in a landfill.
- Be trash-conscious when camping or using trails – place cigarette butts in garbage cans, make sure to pick up after your dogs, and remember the phrase: “Pack it in, pack it out” or “Leave no trace behind”, meaning whatever you bring into the area, you need to leave with it, too, and that includes trash.
- Hazardous waste is to be properly disposed of at designated facilities. Check out Recology South Valley (https://www.cityofgilroy.org/317/Special-Collection-Services) for further information.
- Participate in local events, or groups, dedicated to cleaning local creeks and rivers, such as National River Cleanup Day, Earth Day, and South Bay Clean Creeks Coalition.
Be the solution. Not the cause.