As public-service campaigns go, the Streets Department’s UnLitter Us initiative is making a huge impact around the city. You can see the UnLitter Us ads (featuring text from some of Philly’s most gifted urban poets) at SEPTA stations and on buses, trains and subways; on TV and radio and the web. We’d like to chime in and mention that litter isn’t just an aesthetic blight on street surfaces—it impacts our streams and rivers as well. For instance, trash causes major problems for PWD’s green stormwater infrastructure; when litter blocks inlets to tree trenches and stormwater planters, water doesn’t get a chance to infiltrate those systems and keep our sewer overflows in check. Litter also negatively affects the quality of water that drains into our sewers, and when storm drains get blocked due to excess trash, water is more likely to pond or flood roadways.

Get involved with the UnLitter Us campaign and visit its YouTube page.