Ribble Rivers Trust, in collaboration with Fylde council, has launched a people focussed campaign to combat litter and inspire Lancashire residents to “wave hello to cleaner beaches” this summer.

The campaign aims to raise awareness about the detrimental impact of litter, encompassing issues such as food waste, packaging, dog waste, and plastic pollution on our precious beaches and seas. The rising tide of litter that faces our coast poses a grave threat to our delicate ecosystems, harming wildlife and polluting the picturesque seas we love to bathe in.

What’s causing the problem?

This revelation highlights the urgent need for change. However, the good news is that we can all help to make a difference. By embracing small changes in our daily lives, such as proper waste disposal and responsible pet ownership, we can collectively create a ripple effect of positive change.

For many years microplastics have been making the headlines. Whilst plastic pollution is still a problem, recent DNA analysis of water samples collected from our coast has revealed an alarming presence of bacteria that is typically associated with both sea bird faeces and dog waste.

One of the posters from the campaign for cleaner beaches

One of the most significant issues is the animals that litter attracts. Food waste and packaging attracts unwanted attention from creatures such seagulls and rats. This creates both a nuisance and a risk of disease transmission. Furthermore, the faeces that these sea birds produce has a big impact on water quality by introducing bugs and bacteria into our bathing waters. By properly disposing of food waste, we can ensure that our beaches remain clean, safe, and enjoyable for all.

One of the posters from the campaign for cleaner beaches

Dog waste is another concern. Containing millions of harmful bacteria, dog waste washes into our rivers when unscrupulous owners fail to clean up after their pets. These bacteria find their way onto our beloved beaches. Properly disposing of litter and dog waste is crucial in maintaining clean, safe, and enjoyable beach environments for all.

Even if you don’t reside in a coastal community, you can still help. Vast quantities of litter originate from other areas of the catchment. In fact, when it gets washed into rivers, litter can travel hundreds of miles to the coast.

So, let’s do our best to keep our rivers, beaches, and seas plastic and pollution free this summer!

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