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Volunteers Pick Up Litter In Sabana Park

Littering in Costa Rica is almost a tradition as gallo pinto and running red lights. There are very few streets or public places in Costa Rica that aren't littered with waste products such as containers, papers and wrappers which have been disposed of without thought or consideration to the surroundings and the environment.

It is not uncommon to see a soda can or candy wrapper or worse come flying out of a bus or car window, even on the autopistas.

The autopista General Cañas (San José - Alajuela) is a prime example of this type of littering.

Throughout human history, people have disposed of unwanted materials onto streets, countrysides and remote places.

In Costa Rica littering goes completely unpunished.

According to a study by the Dutch organization VROM, 80% of the people claim that "everybody leaves of a piece of paper, tin or something, on the street behind". Young people from 12 to 24 years cause more litter than the average (Dutch or Belgian) person. 18% of people who regularly cause litter were 50 years of age or older. Nevertheless, automobile drivers and recreationalists, smokers and the youth are specific target groups within many campaigns conducted to keep countries free of litter.

Litter can harm the environment in a number of different ways. It is a breeding ground for disease-causing insects and rodents. Its "ugliness" damages the appearance of scenic environments. Open containers such as paper cups or beverage cans can hold rainwater, providing breeding locations for mosquitoes which have been known to spread diseases

One group has been active in Costa Rica to clean the streets, rivers and parks of litter.

On Sunday some 200 volunteers of the organization Pro Ambiente, Terranostra, took to the Parque Metropolitana La Sabana (Sabana Park).



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