Letter to the editor: Students, Ames residents should dispose of trash properly

Aaron Bazis

Following the fun and mayhem of this year’s Veishea activities, one thing seems more apparent than the previous years: Garbage and debris blanket much of the commonly trekked areas throughout Ames, cluttering up the campus and polluting College and Squaw creeks.

Red cups, wrappers and broken glasses are found in abundance on the sidewalks of Ames; the creek beds are suffused with castaway rubber tires and discarded beer cans, while Lake LaVerne is spotted with countless cigarette butts. The real shame is that Ames is a beautiful community, and Iowa State was named one of the top 25 most beautiful campuses in the nation, but with the incessant littering, this title may be in jeopardy.

There exist several initiatives that address consistent trash deposits in Ames and at Iowa State. Among them are Live Green!, which promotes environmental conservative lifestyles, and the annual Clean College Creek day, which, as the title suggests, addresses trash build-up in College Creek.

Another project that ties to general conservation effort is the Keep Iowa State Beautiful campaign, which through the Adopt Campus project, seeks to keep litter off university grounds. These programs, while useful in cleaning up large concentrations of trash, cannot adequately meet the demands that consistent littering presents.

For more consistent and effective results, the real issue that needs to be addressed is facilitating a desire of students and Ames residents to throw away their garbage, in place of casting it aside on some road or waterway. The solution to this problem is quite simple and requires little effort — each person needs only to properly dispose of his/her own garbage.

If permanent and transient citizens of Ames alike decide, as individuals, to throw the garbage into trash bins and other proper disposal units, Ames can continue to provide a hospitable and welcoming home for those who live here and those to come.