January 27, 2023
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More than 1,300 volunteers statewide removed more than 48,000 pounds of litter in their communities as part of its second-ever month-long “No Trash November” roadway cleanup effort spearheaded by the Tennessee Department of Transportation.

[Above photo by the Tennessee DOT]

The agency sponsors this annual litter prevention campaign – called “Nobody Trashes Tennessee” – with Keep Tennessee Beautiful affiliates and Adopt-A-Highway groups.

“Litter is more than an eyesore. It’s an enormous burden to the state with impacts on public health and safety, the environment, and the economy,” said Denise Baker, who works in the Tennessee DOT Highway Beautification Office, in a statement.

“Our No Trash November partners are passionate about keeping their communities safe, clean, and beautiful and we are thrilled with their continued support for this campaign,” she added. “We encourage all Tennesseans to keep up the momentum by taking personal responsibility for the litter in their neighborhoods and participating in local cleanups or the Adopt-A-Highway program.”

State departments of transportation across the country are involved in a wide range of anti-littering efforts.

Photo by PennDOT

For example, in August, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation recently joined several fellow state agencies to help launch a new anti-litter campaign entitled “PA Fights Dirty: Every Litter Bit Matters.”

The creation of this campaign is one of the many recommendations made by Pennsylvania’s first-ever Litter Action Plan, released in December 2021. That plan also won a Pennsylvania Governor’s Awards for Excellence in May.

Meanwhile, in July, Ohio launched a new litter control program launched, one administered by the Ohio Department of Transportation, that seeks to broaden engagement by the business community in its trash removal efforts.

That new Ohio program allows businesses and groups to fund litter removal services along one-mile, one-direction segments of state highways. In exchange for their sponsorship, Ohio DOT displays the name of the business or group on a sign within their sponsored segment.

Joe Jonas. Image via TxDOT.

Concurrently, the Texas Department of Transportation recruited popular singer, songwriter, and actor Joe Jonas to star in a series of Public Service Announcements as part of the agency’s “Don’t Mess with Texas” anti-littering campaign.

The agency said the “show-stopping” performer – a former Westlake, Texas, resident – takes an “over-the-top” approach in the PSAs to remind folks to keep Texas roadways free of litter.

editor@aashto.org

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