Monday, August 18, 2008

CPRE Stop the Drop Inadequacy

CPRE are campaigning on litter, and Panorama did a programme on it yesterday; Bill Bryson wants people to be fined on the spot. Well, OK, but not the maximum fine, which Thatcher cranked up to thousands of pounds max. Result: fines for littering withered away, because police and councils knew that disproportionate fines would be counterproductive and too much trouble.

He also wants deposits on cans and bottles. Good idea. Why not? Ask Joan Ruddock, the DEFRA minister responsible. Dulcet tones "Oh, we can't do that. People's behaviour has changed."

What a disappointment Joan Ruddock has been ever since she went into Parliament. Older readers will remember that she used to be the Chair of CND. Her principles led her into Parliament, but did not follow her there. (That is a quote from someone like Cobbett, but I couldnt find a link for it)

The answer to littering is to make the polluter pay. We cannot catch any but a tiny proportion of the direct litterers, but we sure can catch the primary originators of the litter, because their names are splashed all over the litter: Sun Newspaper, Coca Cola, Red Bull, Lambert and Butler, &c &c.

So put a levy on the original producers of litter, hypothecated to litter clearance. This will motivate the littering corporations to put out the anti-litter message with their products, and gradually they will clean up. More details here.

I put this suggestion to CPRE, twice, but they did not respond. NGOs seem unable do much more than respond to their problems - they lack the guts to tackle the causes at root.

Amnesty International are the same; they work for the cases, but fleer away from addressing the causes, in that they refuse to back the Global Human Rights Index.

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