The Neat Streets Grassmarket project aimed to raise awareness of, and reduce, litter. A series of interventions were trialled between May and August 2016, in the Grassmarket area. The project was delivered in three phases which aimed to reduce litter through a variety of distinct methods. Whilst general litter was targeted throughout, some interventions targeted a specific litter type, for example, cigarette litter.
One of the key successes of the project was the salient bins, which saw, on average, a 24% increase in use from the baseline. Additionally, the leaflet litter bin was also well utilised, with 315kg of leaflets deposited in the 22 days it was in service. Other interventions, such as the lamppost wraps, banners and the cigarette bins, had an
immediate, short term impact, but counts of littered items later returned to the average despite interventions being in place.
-Increasing the visibility of bins has proven to be an effective “nudge” to promoting correct waste disposal. Adding an additional element of interactivity with a voting option again increases the “nudge” to engage with the bins.
-Installing new bins promotes correct disposal behaviour.
-Using relevant and current questions on voting bins proves to be an engaging way to encourage conscious waste disposal.
Although local stakeholders, including the businesses, were engaged with the scoping of the project from the launch, engagement levels dropped as the project progressed. In future projects, if working with partners, it would be beneficial to ensure that one point of contact from the core project team is highlighted in all communications and that they work on retaining engagement from stakeholders throughout the project.