Thursday, 11 February 2010

Britain is getting dirtier, finds Defra survey

Britain is getting dirtier with more graffiti and grime on the streets, according to the latest Government survey.

By Louise Gray, Environment CorrespondentPublished: 7:00AM GMT 11 Feb 2010
The inspection of thousands of parks and streets found a slight decrease in the amount of cigarette butts and food packets thrown on the ground.
But dog mess, tag graffiti and chewing gum stains on the pavements has increased over the last year.

The Keep Britain Tidy survey, funded by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), looked at more than 12,000 sites around Britain.
The biggest litter problem is detritus from smokers but the proportion of sites where cigarette butts were found fell slightly to just over three quarters. The amount of crisp packets and empty drinks cans littering the streets also fell.
However, dog mess was a problem for local people at 8 per cent of sites, compared to 6 per cent last year. Chewing gum spat out on the street had stained just under a third of areas, compared to a quarter last year. Tyre tracks or "staining" left by vehicles leaking oil was up and "tag" graffiti has also increased.
Overall the "cleanliness score" given by inspectors was down slightly from last year.
Environment Minister, Jim Fitzpatrick, said people need to take more responsibility for litter.
"It only takes a little effort to put our litter in the bin, but it makes a huge difference to our own well being and to the environment," he said.