Let’s offer small incentive to curb illegal dumping

Notice shoppers lining up to return wine and beer empties and plastic containers for a few coins.

Let’s offer small incentive to curb illegal dumping

Let’s offer small incentive to curb illegal dumping

Re: Our view “Dumping cost”, (Citizen, July 17)

Notice how quickly most shoppers adapted to bringing their own reusable bags to save paying five cents for plastic ones. Notice shoppers lining up to return wine and beer empties and plastic containers for a few coins.

We have demonstrated that for small incentives, we adapt very well. So, why not provide incentive to prevent illegal dumping of appliances and dangerous items such as batteries and florescent light bulbs that contain mercury? Obviously, the honour system is failing when irresponsible citizens dump hazardous items into our forests.

Let’s go further by giving drug addicts free needles only upon returning their used ones. Certainly, this small act of responsibility is reasonable and critical to keeping our downtown and rivers safe.

Instead of charging to drop off unwanted items, let’s offer financial incentives or savings for those who comply. It’s always preferable to reward good behavior than punish bad behavior. A response from local leaders will indicate who has the determination to implement these simple changes that can have huge positive impact.

Elisabeth Gelb

Duncan