In 2015 a Commons Select Committee concluded that that “England is a litter-ridden country compared to most of Europe, North America and Japan”. There’s been a lot of news around the pollution caused by plastic waste in the environment. You don’t have to go far to see this. The A47 to the west of Eye along the southern edge Star Pit Nature Reserve is one of the cities grot spots. The nature reserve is a site of special scientific interest with many species of water beetle found in the shallow pools.
Cans, coffee cups and plastic bottles seem to make up a lot of the litter but there is also a wide range of packing, plastic bags, drinks cartons and miscellaneous pieces of cardboard. Some of it is quite old so it obviously hasn’t been cleaned for a while. If this was along Bourges Boulevard in Peterborough there would be an outcry, because this is in the ‘countryside’ it almost seems fine to ignore it.
Research on roadside litter by the RSPB and Keep Britain Tidy has found more than 8% of bottles and almost 5% of the cans contained remains of some of our rarest native mammals, including shrews, bank voles and wood mice.