Illegally dumping trash on beaches is still a problem, despite city and town ordinances that forbid littering on public roads and public lands, according to advocates with Clean Ocean Access.
Volunteers with Clean Ocean Access returned to Weaver Cove in Portsmouth this month to clean the beach. Executive Director Dave McLaughlin said he was disappointed to find large pieces of trash in the same area volunteers cleared off more than a year ago.
They found the usual items: cigarette butts, plastic bottles and bags. But also a mattress, a sink garbage disposal, an amplifier, “…two more tires and four more flat screen TVs, which is really unfortunate considering that there's electronic waste disposal days in all communities—it's free,” said McLaughlin. “So there are available and accessible means for people to get rid of electronic waste.”
McLaughlin thinks only a few people are making bad decisions.
“And these particular items – like oil filters and electronic waste – they don't belong in a natural environment,” said McLaughlin. “I can't imagine how long it would take to degrade.”
McLaughlin thinks tackling this problem requires stronger enforcement of ordinances that prohibit littering, as well as the help of residents who could report people they see littering.