Free Ways to Keep America Beautiful

Posted on 04/11/2012

More than 51 billion pieces of litter land on US road ways each year, costing almost $11.5 billion to clean up. Since 1960 the amount of trash generated in America has almost tripled, totaling 250 million tons of garbage a year. America may be beautiful, but there’s plenty of trash to go around. In honor of Keep America Beautiful month this April, try these free ways to keep your corner of it clean.

Stop Junk Mail with Free App Reduce waste by eliminating something you probably don’t like anyway—junk mail. Download the free PaperKarma app, snap a photo of your junk mail and PaperKarma will automatically contact the mailer and remove you from the distribution list. Whether it’s a credit card application or a Victoria’s Secret catalog, if you don’t want it then have PaperKarma help you eliminate it.

Recycle Your Gadgets
The US EPA estimates that more than 3.2 tons of electronics end up in the landfill each year. Since computers are tossed out every three to five years, there is a constant supply of waste. Avoid this vicious cycle by simply taking your equipment in any condition to one of nearly 3,000 participating Goodwill locations around the country to have it refurbished or recycled properly through the Dell Reconnect program.

Carry a Pocket Ashtray
Cigarette butts are the most littered item in America. They account for more than one-third of litter. But what may seem harmless can damage natural resources and pollute waterways. Encourage smokers to carry pocket ashtrays to cut down on this dirty habit. Some communities like Garland County, Arkansas are giving them away for free.

Share Informative Games
Learning not to litter can start at a very young age. Help little ones get the message loud and clear with free games found at It’s a resource created by Keep American Beautiful to share information about garbage, beautification and litter prevention.

Join a Community Clean Up
Clean up campaigns are happening in communities all over the country. Take part in efforts to give your city’s parks and roadways a spring clean. Look for a local Keep America Beautiful affiliate at and find out when upcoming litter clean ups are planned. You can be a part of keeping America beautiful.

By Alison Storm

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