Think Before You Throw Remember the Earth! By Anika Keuning
Patrick Harvey, a fifth grader at the American School in Japan (ASIJ), throws a scrunched up candy bar wrapper on the ground. The candy wrapper twirls in the wind and makes a noise as it floats down the side walk. Patrick turns around and sees the wrapper, but he shrugs. Oh well. What Patrick doesn’t realize is that throwing that candy wrapper on the street, and not properly in a trash can, is littering. Garbage that doesn’t get thrown away properly ends up in our streets, our parks, the ocean and eventually the Arctic and Antarctic. “People all over the world pollute and waste things for their own pleasure,” says upset Quinton Leong, another fifth grader at ASIJ. Because of our carelessly discarded garbage, the average temperatures have climbed 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit (0.8 degree Celsius) around the world since 1880, much of this in recent decades, according to NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies---which means that littering and global warming is getting worse and worse. Bad littering leads to animal endangerment pollution and climate change. Also, according to blogger rusne, an alarming number of animals are becoming
extinct every day, and more than half the world’s species will be extinct in 100 years! Littering is illegal. Most people are unaware of littering fines. Most localities also have fines for businesses or pedestrians caught littering. Many people are unaware that the person opening a package of gum and dropping the wrapper on the sidewalk is doing an illegal act and, if caught, could face charges. Littering is against the law, according to Cathy Ives’ blog. In 2005, the scrap value of 135 billion wasted beverage bottles and cans exceeded $2.1 billion. This means that if these containers been recycled instead of trashed, they would have been worth over $2.1 billion at stores, also according to Cathy Ives’ blog. “There aren't many things that are universally cool, and it's cool not to litter. I'd never do it,” says Matthew McConaughey, an American actor. Littering is hard to stop, but we can do it! If we stop throwing garbage on the road, and try throwing it in the trash can instead, and if we ‘think before we throw’, we can make a BIG difference and help our world be a better place.