Environment | May 9, 2023
Litter is everywhere. Coffee cups, food wrappers, cigarette butts, plastic bags, gum, drink bottles and dog waste bags. These items are scattered along sidewalks, boulevards and curbs, tangled in fences, in the bushes along trails and dumped throughout parks. Litter has become a growing problem in Mississauga.
Garbage, mostly litter, is a big issue for City maintenance crews who are working hard to address the problem. Despite additional waste bins and more frequent emptying, litter keeps blanketing the city.
While seeing full dog waste bags lying on the ground or discarded facemasks hanging from tree branches might not seem like a big deal – it harms the environment, wildlife and your health.
Litter pollutes neighborhoods, causes issues with waterways, like creeks and rivers, can affect the growth of trees and plants, and destroys the natural beauty of Mississauga’s community. When litter breaks down, toxic materials, waste and bacteria can enter soil, creeks and rivers.
Each year, Mississauga Animal Services receives calls about wildlife getting caught in litter left on the ground. Animals can get their head or neck stuck in bottles, jars, cans and food containers, causing them to struggle to break free. It can cause them to suffocate, slowly grow weaker or even starve to death.
Birds, smaller animals and aquatic life can eat or get tangled in plastic bags, netting, fishing lines or plastic can ring holders.
Litter is an environmental hazard that can be quickly and easily resolved.
The City is asking everyone to take extra care to clean up after you’ve been out for a walk with your dog(s), played on a sports field, enjoyed an outdoor meal or explored a park or trail.
The City’s annual spring maintenance and clean-up work has begun. Crews are busy clearing litter and conducting street sweeping to help clear debris and litter off roadways, catch basins and drains. Garbage bins are available at City playgrounds, park pathways, trails, tennis courts, basketball courts, bocce courts, multi-use pads, skate parks, artificial fields and picnic shelters.
See a full waste or recycling container? If you spot a full bin or a litter concern in a park or on a trail, please report it by calling 311.
Construction and renovation waste
Materials like wood, bricks, drywall, metal, cardboard, carpeting, as well as furnishings, are also becoming a major source of litter and are a form of illegal dumping if not disposed properly.
In Mississauga, dumping garbage, renovation, household or bulky items at facilities and parks is illegal. The Debris and Anti-Littering By-law prohibits the throwing, placing or depositing of refuse or debris on private property – or on City property.
Under the Environmental Protection Act, an individual or company could face significant penalties for each offence committed. Littering and illegal dumping fines can run as high as $500 or more.
Prevent litter in Mississauga
We all have a part to play in keeping Mississauga clean. Here are a few ways you can make a difference:
For more information about how to stop litter issues in your neighbourhood, visit ownyourlitter.ca.
City of Mississauga Media Relations
905-615-3200, ext. 5232