Small Group Project SP100 Professor Carey 18 November 2011
ObjectiveTo propose new solutions and implement a plan of action to keep parks in our community free of litter and debris.
Local Park InformationEast county is home to multiple beautiful parks. Glen Otto, Oxbow and Dabney are just some of the parks that many residents in our community enjoy.
Issue Locals and visitors often litter on purpose, unintentionally or because the resources to get rid of their garbage is unavailable. Our public parks are suffering due to the immense amount of waste that is not properly disposed of. This debris affects many perspectives. It may harm the wildlife (suffocating, trapping, etc.), may pollute nearby water sources, affects the overall cleanliness and sanitation, as well as disrupts the natural beauty of our outdoor community resources. For these reasons, change must happen to preserve our parks and keep them clean for everyone for generations to come.
Statistics• Pedestrians, primarily younger than 25, account for greater than 76 percent of all littering in parks, roadside parks or recreational areas.
Solution #1: Raise the fine for littering• There are current laws that fine people who litter.• We propose that the fine be raised because a harsher punishment may prevent people from littering when there are more consequences at risk.• It would cost money to create and install these signs, but the profit would eventually out weigh the cost because the parks would stay cleaner, and the profit made from the fines could go towards community clean-up efforts.
Solution #2: Increase the number of parkrangers patrolling, regulating, and enforcing the rules. • Increasing the number of park rangers monitoring the parks would greatly reduce the amount of littering, and the extra people would also help with delivering the higher fines we want to implement. • It would cost quite a bit of money to hire additional staff, but there are also many people passionate about these parks who are willing to volunteer their time for this cause. • More money could also be fundraised through community charity events, the extra fines, and donations.
Solution #3: Install security cameras• The installation of security cameras would also help with the littering issue. If people know they are being watched, they are less likely to go against the laws.• The monitoring system would help to crack down on people breaking the law• Though this system has upfront costs, again it will pay off in the end, resulting in cleaner parks.
Solution #4: Install more garbage cans andrecycling bins, further away from water sources, but closer in proximity to people. • Part of the problem is that garbage cans are not easily accessible, or if they are, they are often overflowing with garbage. There also are not many available recycling bins. • By installing more garbage cans and recycling bins in a systematic and convenient matter, there would be a great reduction in the debris that gets left behind.
Solution #5: Ban on plastic• We suggest putting a ban on plastic bags (like grocery bags) because these bags do not decompose for 10 to 20 years, and impose an immediate danger on the wildlife and their habitat. These bags end up all over the place, and remain there until someone picks them up.• People can switch to reusable bags and coolers to avoid tickets for using plastic bags. People are also much less likely to improperly discard canvas bags.
InterviewQ: Are you well informed on the issue of littering?A: Yes, I mean I know that it ‘s not good and all. I always see no littering signs whenever I go to a park. I’m not too informed on its effects on animals other than it is not good for them.Q: When you go to water parks like Oxbow, do you see a lot of litter on the grounds and in the water?A: It depends on the season. I usually go to Oxbow a couple times during the summer and there is some litter but not loads. I see lots of cigarette butts and wrappers. When I occasionally go to the park during the “off season” it is usually pretty clean. Don’t really see any litter in the water.Q: When you see this litter, do you pick it up?A: It depends on what it is. Some of the stuff littering the ground can be pretty suspicious. If it’s like a water bottle, or any plastic I usually pick it up and throw it away in the nearest trash can.Q: Have you ever participated in an organized cleanup project, like the Beach Clean-ups?A: No, but I would if I knew of any cleanup projects. Usually when I find out about them its too late or I have plans.Q: Do you think its important to have these cleanups?A: Well ya, I mean nobody likes to go have fun at a park like Oxbow and see a bunch of garbage on the ground and in the water. I think its good not only for the environment and animals but also for people to be able to relax and have fun without worry of contamination or diseases.Q: If the entry fee were to increase from 5 dollars to 7 dollars for a littering fee, would this discourage you from visiting the park?A: I mean it’s a lot of money to get into a park, especially if it’s only for the day but if it were to keep the park clean I guess it wouldn’t bother me as much.Q: If the park gave you an opportunity to earn back the 2 extra dollars you paid for entrance by turning in a bag of garbage when you leave, would you do so?A: Ya, as long as they provide the bags and there was garbage to collect.Q: Do you think there should be more done concerning the upkeep of the parks?A: I’m not really sure what rules and regulations are in place other than the fines you get if you get caught, but I think that if they had signs informing people why littering is bad and the consequences of the offender it would perhaps reduce litter, even if just a little.
Videos• Video by Brittany: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaKIxQYdp hQ• Video by Matthew: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f- wCVHWtDXU
Small Group # 1 Responsibilities• Shannon Givens: Research, PowerPoint, Speech• Jennifer Sikhamsouk: Research, PowerPoint, Speech• Ashley Walker: Research, Brochure• Brittany Oxford: Group leader (organize meetings + e-mail updates), Research, Video, interview• Matthew Howard: Video• Roger Whitehead: Research