(May 30, 2008) — I'm so glad to see your excellent editorial asking the industry to get involved to pitch in on the litter issue facing our lands and oceans. As a successful executive recruiter in the plastics and packaging industries for the past 19 years, I have taken a personal approach to this issue in my own community. I have given back, so to speak, by spearheading a community clean-up day in the spring and fall, staging areas for residents to meet at the local schools, where they can get bags and gloves and walk the surrounding streets and creek beds and pick up the strewn litter.
To no one's surprise, like your editorial points out, it's all packaging and plastic trash. I think it would be extremely effective if companies took proactive steps to find solutions as you suggest, i.e., set up collection cans in schools and other prominent areas where people eat and drink, and also partner with communities, like mine, that are always trying to raise awareness of the amount of litter on our streets, in our green spaces and watershed areas (our creeks drain right to the ocean). This would send out a powerful message that each of us can make a difference. Thanks for your supportive voice.
How about issuing a challenge to these companies to help form a nationwide committee with a representative from each company to implement some solutions? I will be the first to volunteer to be on that committee!
Blake/Hansen & Schmidt Ltd.
Westlake Village, Calif.