Tidbit Tuesday | EcoCamp Streets Litter Index
July 8, 2014 2 Comments
On Tuesdays, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation & Utilities (MOTU) posts a map or graphic that tells a story about transportation or utilities in the City of Brotherly Love.
Clean streets are one of the key factors that promote walkability. How clean are our streets? This week, we looked at Streets Litter Index from EcoCamp data recently released by the Philadelphia Streets Department. West and North Philadelphia have among the highest street litter indices in the city, as do other highly populous areas, as seen by the similarities between the Street Litter Index map and population maps below.
Over the past 5 years Philadelphia’s streets have generally become cleaner, as shown by a comparison of litter indices collected in the autumns of 2008 and 2013. Read more about the Street Department’s UnLitter Us Campaign here.
To get a better idea of where litter ends up, what types of litter are most common, and who pays for cleanup, we took a look at the 2009 National Visible Litter Survey and Litter Cost Study. As illustrated by the charts below, transitional areas, such as train stations, accumulate the most litter, since they often require that people discard items such as cigarettes and food prior to entry. The most prevalent form of litter is cigarette butts. Nationally, the cost of cleanup mainly falls on businesses, who contribute 79.5% of the funds required to remove litter.
More Streets Department EcoCamp data can be found here.