We are circling in on the problem of chewing gum this month as part of a campaign that encourages users to dispose of their gum responsibly, rather than dropping it on the street.
As part of the national ‘Bin It Your Way’ initiative, Cllr Julia Neden-Watts, the Assistant Cabinet Member for Environment, took to the streets of Twickenham armed with chalk to highlight the growing issue of people who drop chewing gum on the floor.
The average piece of chewing gum costs less than 30p. However, costs the Council more than £1.50 to remove. Cllr Neden-Watts used colourful chalk to circle around chewing gum on York Street to highlight how big the problem is.
Throughout September she is inviting local groups and schools to follow suit and shine a chalky light on the problem across the borough.
Cllr Neden-Watts, said:
“Put simply there is no excuse for dropping chewing gum. It is selfish and damaging to the environment. Chewing gum sticks to the pavement. It does not biodegrade as it is made from synthetic plastics and causes the same environmental harm as plastic.
“There not being a bin nearby is no excuse. All gum comes in a wrapper that can be used to wrap up the gum so it can be disposed of at a future time.
“People may not know that it costs Richmond Council £1.50 to clean up a 30p piece of gum and I’m sure everyone would agree that money is much better spent on other services.
“Whilst the chalk on the pavement may wash off, the gum will not. So, I hope that when people see all the circles on the floor - they will think again before dropping gum.”
Dropping gum on the road is also regarded as a form of littering and could land the culprit with a £80 fixed penalty notice.
If you would like to hold a chalking event, please email: Jessica.Lewis@richmondandwandsworth.gov.uk
— from a Richmond Council press release - 13 September 2018