NOTE: This article was originally published in 2008.
The nature and the beauty that Eastern Madera County residents love and take pride in is being seriously damaged and threatened by litter, illegal dumping and a lack of responsible recycling. The negative impact on local businesses has aesthetic as well as financial consequences when visitors and tourists decide that the mountain area isn’t such a beautiful place to visit after all.
The good news is that the situation can be reversed, and business owners can help by taking the following steps:
☆ Making a litter-free environment (including the entrance, walkway, garbage bin area and parking lot) high priority. A little bit of litter attracts even more litter, so not allowing litter to stick around will have a significant positive impact.
☆ Communicating this priority with all employees, encouraging (or mandating) their participation.
☆ Regularly checking garbage bins to see that they are properly covered and adequately serviced. Also, making sure that trash thrown in the bin is secured in bags to reduce the likelihood of scattered litter when picked up by garbage trucks.
☆ Providing cigarette/ash and trash receptacles at entrances and/or loading docks. Clusters of cigarette butts near entries are most unsightly. Points of entry are key areas for litter accumulation and also key areas for litter prevention.
☆ Making sure that delivery trucks (including those of vendors and contractors) have enclosed or covered loads.
☆ Recycling all that is recyclable.
☆ Reporting illegal dumping on business property.
☆ Checking out cansandbottles.com for ideas and resources.
☆ Providing a team for KOMB’s cleanup events.
An environment that is healthy, safe, clean and beautiful is more appealing to loyal and potential clients and customers.
You may not own a business, but chances are good that you patronize local businesses. Let the owners/managers know when you spot something that’s unsightly. And, give them positive feedback when you notice their efforts toward making our community clean and beautiful.
We invite Mountain Area businesses to implement the three R’s - Reduce, Re-use, and Recycle - to decrease waste, preserve our natural resources, and keep our mountains beautiful.
The next KOMB meeting is 6:30 p.m., Feb. 23, at Round Table Pizza in Oakhurst. All are welcome.