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Defra: Battle to improve our "dirty streets" must continue

Litter is an unsightly problem to Englands streets and the public and local authorities have to step up the fight against it, claims Minister for Sustainable Development and Innovation Lord Hunt.

His calls come amid the publication of the latest Local Environmental Quality Survey which shows that streets around the country are still in an unsatisfactory condition. It also showed that smoking related litter remains by far the most prevalent item of litter on Englands streets.

This is the third litter report to appear in the last two weeks. The first was the Litterbugs report launched by the Campaign to Protect Rural England and the Policy Exchange (see MRW story).
The second report was launched by the Industry Council for Packaging & the Environment which contradicted the findings in the Litterbugs report and said packaging only accounted for 1.3 per cent of littered items dropped on Englands streets. Incpen, CPRE and Defra all commissioned ENCAMS to compile their reports.

Hunt said: The good news is that the state of our streets is not getting any worse, but the small three per cent improvement is nothing to shout about. For most people dropping litter on the street is unthinkable. It is the minority who are letting us down.

Litter is everyones responsibility and we all need to work together; both local and central Government and the public, to help improve the look of our communities and put a stop to this unsightly problem.

Keep Britain Tidy chief executive Phil Barton added that a massive amount of work remains to be done to reduce litter on our streets.

Keep Britain Tidy spokesman Dickie Felton said: We are really pleased litter is in the news. The more headlines this issue gets the better and can only help our cause for a cleaner country.

The fact that there have been three litter reports recently could not come at a better time. We are re-launching our Big Tidy Up campaign at the end of this month which will see thousands of litter picks take place nationwide. We urge people to get involved and make a difference to their communities at


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