Our front page story this week is about an admirable new recycling initiative that aims to not only help clean up the streets, but also help the environment.
The problem of waste is certainly something BCM residents know a thing or two about.
Even when the municipality isn’t on strike, it seems that there’s just no end to the litter that fills streets, clogs gutters and ruins beachfronts.
I want to look at an aspect of this problem that I don’t think gets much attention or, at least, doesn’t get as much attention as it deserves.
And that is the lack of refuse bins in and around the BCM area. While it is true that there are those who simply dump their rubbish at the most convenient spot and forget about it, the truth is that there’s not much choice for those who want to do things properly.
Let’s use Nahoon Beach as an example. Nahoon Corner is one of the most popular beach spots around Nahoon Beach and sees heavy foot traffic, especially over weekends. However, there are only a handful of bins provided – and a good number of them are actually broken.
Go down to Corner on a Sunday morning and you’ll find the bins overflowing with even more rubbish piled around them. It is clear that the number of bins is grossly inadequate for the amount of waste generated but nothing has really been done about it.
The fact that people took the time to not only fill the bins but then ensure they left their rubbish by them when they were full, shows that beach-goers aren’t as careless as we’d like to think. Clearly they want to use the bins and properly dispose of their rubbish but simply cannot.
The same goes for the rest of the beach. Yes, people leaving their rubbish on the beach itself is problematic and should be rightly criticised. But why aren’t any bins provided along the beach for people to use?
As it stands, the closest bins are at Corner or the Lifesaver Shack and, as we just discussed, even these are inadequate to meet demand.
And all this without even bringing up the rather spotty approach to rubbish collection
This can be extended to the city as a whole. In many areas, there are simply not enough bins provided to cope with the amount of waste generated, which means the ones that are present quickly fill up, leaving residents with nowhere else to dispose of their rubbish.
It won’t solve our litter problem entirely, of course, but surely one of the best ways to encourage proper waste disposal is to give citizens the option to do so in the first place?