Sustainability Tip: Leave No Trace

Leave No Trace Trash In America LitterAccording to a survey by Keep America Beautiful, there are more than 6,700 individual pieces of litter per mile of roadway in the United States, over 90 percent of which are less than four inches. One of the best ways to prevent litter is by adhering to leave no trace principles. Leave no trace (LNT) is both a philosophy and an organization, the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics. The idea is to leave places in as good or better condition than you found them. While LNT is often mentioned in reference to outdoor recreation activities, the idea can be applied anywhere, in any situation, to prevent litter, protect our natural resources, and protect the quality of our outdoor environment. (Source: Leave No Trace,


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Three Tips for What You Can Do To Leave No Trace:

1.) Get in the know. Education is important for litter prevention. Research how to plan, execute and properly dispose of waste for any outdoor event, excursion, and your daily activities. For example, minimize the wrapping and packaging of items you take outside, keep an eye on loose items from flying out the car window or truck bed, and make sure waste receptacle lids are closed and secure. 

2. ) Do not be fooled by food. Even organic material, like banana peels or apple cores, is litter. Any item not found naturally in our local environment is considered litter and should not be tossed or left outside.

3.) Take litter personally. Not only should you not litter, but do your part by picking up litter whenever and wherever you see it. Talk with others about ways to prevent litter and if you see something, say something.

 (Source: The Nature Conservancy)


Ford Sanger

Author: Ford Sanger

Born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, Ford first came to colorful Colorado for college and to strengthen his relationship with the environment. A graduate of the University of Denver, Ford received his Bachelor’s degree in geography with minors in sustainability and international studies. During his time in college Ford participated in a wide range of extracurricular activities as well as international research and travel programs in places like Tanzania, India, Nicaragua, and Mexico.