News » Archived News 2009

Timely Boost for Cork City Council’s Gum Litter Awareness Campaign

"2009 August gum litter marco

Cork City Council's Litter Warden Supervisor, Noel Long, and Litter Warden, Cara Behan, show a gum-free pavement on Grand Parade to Marco Schmunkamp, Durren, near Cologne (which is twinned with Cork city), Germany.  Marco is currently on secondment to Cork City Council.

John Jones, Cork City Council  “Our aim is to sustain the tremendous momentum already achieved by the Gum Litter Campaign both locally and nationally. The idea is to build on the success achieved to date. The clear evidence on the streets is that the campaign is working and this benefits the whole community in terms of a cleaner and more visually attractive environment.”

Cork City Council is one of 30 Local Authorities participating in the Gum Litter Taskforce (GLT) National Gum Litter Campaign. The GLT was established in 2006 as a joint initiative between the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government and the gum industry as represented by the Food and Drink Industry Ireland (FDII), a business sector of IBEC.

This year’s national Gum Litter Campaign was launched in June and follows on from highly successful campaigns mounted in 2007 and 2008. These campaigns saw very significant improvements in relation to gum litter awareness and disposal behaviour. In five cities monitored during 2008, there was an overall decrease of chewing gum litter of 36% since the beginning of the campaign.

Furthermore, research carried out on behalf of the Gum Litter Taskforce by Lansdowne Market Research showed that the perception of chewing gum as litter increased from 79% in June 2006 to 87% by 2009 while reported spitting is also down significantly with 80% now claiming never to spit gum compared to 73% in 2007 and 58% in June 2006.

 Commenting on the success of the campaign to date Paul Kelly, Chairman of the Gum Litter Taskforce paid tribute to the participating local authorities. “None of this could have been achieved without the efforts of the participating local authorities. Their hard work on the ground in their localities has resulted in these very significant improvements and I am very pleased that we have had a record number of local authorities participating this year. I also want to pay tribute to Cork City Council which is now moving to build upon the success achieved already this year. This very timely boost can only result in further progress.”

 The National Gum Litter Campaign includes outdoor advertising, in-store and around store advertising, point of sale materials, radio advertisements and the promotion of greater awareness of litter fines for the irresponsible disposal of gum in the 30 local authority areas. The Gum Litter Taskforce also sponsors five specific gum litter awards in the national Tidy Towns competition.

 Participation in the National Gum Litter Campaign has already had positive benefits in terms of tackling the problems associated with the irresponsible disposal of gum litter in our area” said John Jones. “It is clear that the best way to tackle the issue is through education and awareness building and the improvements made at a national level over the past two years are being reflected in our area as well. Over the coming weeks we will be engaging in a range of activities aimed at boosting awareness and reinforcing the work done since June in this year’s campaign and we are looking to further improvements as a result.”

Further information is available from:

John Jones,

Communications Liaison Officer,

Environment, Cork City Council, City Hall, Cork.

021 / 4924308

Paul Kelly, Chairman                                                  Arnold Dillon

Gum Litter Taskforce                                                  IBEC Press Office

Tel:  01 605 1621                                                       Tel:  01 605 1638

Mobile:  087 923 8188

About the Gum Litter Taskforce

2009 Gum Litter Taskforce Campaign Participants:

The City Councils of Dublin, Galway, Limerick, Waterford and Cork, County Councils of Cavan, Carlow, Cork Dun Laoghaire Rathdown, Donegal, Fingal, Galway, Kilkenny, Kerry Laois, Limerick, Leitrim, Longford, Monaghan, Mayo, Offaly, Roscommon, South Dublin, Sligo, South Tipperary, Wexford, Waterford and Westmeath, Tralee and Ennis Town Council are also participating in the programme.

The Gum Litter Taskforce (GLT) was established following a negotiated agreement between the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government and the chewing gum industry.

The joint initiative is the result of negotiations between the Department and Food and Drink Industry Ireland – a business sector of IBEC - on behalf of the chewing gum industry. This follows the publication of the Government Study on Chewing Gum, Fast-Food packaging and ATM receipt litter.

The GLT is charged with developing and implementing an Action Programme to tackle gum litter in the most sustainable way – by changing behaviour, the root cause of the issue.

Members of the GLT include representatives of the chewing gum industry, Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Food and Drink Industry Ireland, Department of Education and Science, ENFO, ECO UNESCO, Foroige, local authority representatives and Retail Ireland.





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