Wexford joins ‘Think Before You Flush’ campaign 12/02/17 : the chronicle.ie

Wexford joins ‘Think Before You Flush’ campaign 12/02/17

| February 12, 2017

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Clean Coasts has partnered with Irish Water, for the second year running, to launch the ‘Think Before You Flush’ Community Initiative. This programme aims to tackle the problems sanitary products can cause the waste water network and marine environment if flushed down the toilet.

As part of the Initiative, educational workshops for schools and businesses as well as community information events will be held to raise awareness of sewage related littering and change poor flushing behaviour.

Throughout 2017, Clean Coasts and Irish Water will be establishing links with Wexford locals on the ground, whose community spirit and dedication to the local marine environment has seen Wexford selected as one of eight communities nationwide to participate in the initiative.

Sanitary items such as cotton bud sticks, face/baby wipes and those items we term as our ‘Dirty Dozen’ should not be flushed down the toilet, entering our waste water treatment network, which is unable to deal with this type of waste. In a study of over 1000 Irish people, a shocking 3 in 10 admitted to flushing such items down the toilet. Of these, 58% admitted to flushing baby wipes down the toilet, 40% facial wipes, 26% cotton bud sticks, 24% tampons and 21% cigarette butts. More than half of those who flush these items down the toilet did so simply due to a lack of knowledge. Sewage related litter is one of the largest categories of litter found on our beaches and is considered to be the most offensive.

90% of those surveyed agreed that seeing sewage related litter during a visit to the beach would disgust them while 84% of those surveyed agreed that if they knew that the items flushed down the toilet could end up being discharged into the ocean and could pollute our coastline and cause potential health risks they would not dispose of items in this way. This type of marine litter is totally preventable by simply changing our flushing behaviour.

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