Our Opinion: Join litter prevention, cleanup efforts

News Tribune editorial

Spring traditionally is associated with grilling, baseball and cleanup.

For the past decade, the Missouri departments of transportation (MoDOT) and conservation have recruited volunteers to help clean up unsightly litter.

April is the designated month for the No More Trash! Bash across the state.

Last year, nearly 160,000 bags of litter were collected statewide and more than 17,000 bags were filled in Central Missouri.

Adopt-A-Highway volunteers play a major role in cleanup efforts, according to transportation officials. Adopting groups in Mid-Missouri picked up about 2,500 bags of litter in April 2011.

In addition to the cleanup, agencies and volunteers conduct outreach and education efforts throughout April to emphasis litter prevention.

Each food wrapper, aluminum can or other debris not tossed on roadsides, along trails or into streams is one less item to retrieve.

The anti-litter effort not only beautifies our state, it permits state government to be more efficient. “We are grateful for the work these volunteers do, because for every state-maintained mile that’s mowed, landscaped or kept litter-free by our adopters, MoDOT can devote more resources to other critical areas,” said Dianna Johnson, the agency’s Adopt-A-Highway coordinator for Mid-Missouri.

Anyone interested in volunteering for the cleanup or an educational activity is asked to visit www.nomoretrash.org or call 888/275-6636.

We look forward to a time when education eliminates the need for the No More Trash! Bash.

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