Litterbugs Will Be Prosecuted

Saturday, May 19, 2007

The following excerpts are from an interesting article in this month's JO magazine:
Beginning this January, the Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) spent JD173,000 to place 16 cameras on police cares all over the capital, in order to catch garbage-tossers in the act. Litterers who are caught on camera get handed a JD10-20 fine, which the municipality hopes to increase in the future.

A shocking 1,200 littering tickets were given out in March along. "Littering violations now make up 13 percent of all tickets written," says Engineer Ahmad Khawaideh, Head of Traffic Regulations at the Greater Amman Municipality. And that's only from 16 cameras!

GAM did not expect such an immense number of violations, Khawaideh said; they expected up to 10 tickets per day, per camera. But each camera is recording up to 100 traffic incidents daily, about 13 of which are environmental incidents – highlighting the necessity of stressing to the public the problem of littering, but also causing manpower strain on the GAM.

"Littering has become an immense burden on the country, and that is not only due to environmental issues at stake, but aesthetic and safety concerns as well," says Khawaideh. "Once someone breaks the habit of tossing trash out the window, they will not only help in keeping the country clean and environmentally friendly, but also save the life of a municipality worker." Many municipality workers have been struck and killed by vehicles while trying to clean the main streets of Amman, he adds.

"People tend to think that our goal is giving out tickets," Khawaideh says. "In fact, our goal is to have a cleaner and more environmentally-friendly country."
Read the full article in the May 2007 edition of JO magazine.


Anonymous kinzi said...

I saw this article, and applaud the concept in one way and harrumph in frustration in another. I am so glad steps are being taken to address the littering problem.

BUT why can't tickets be given to people who put the lives of others in danger by breaking existing traffic laws? It seems the emphasis if a bit skewed. Hm. Maybe time for a letter to the editor.

It's kind of like the new Humane Society Center. I love the concept and the care that has gone into it. But do dogs really need nice tiles, beds and central heating when Bedouins living down the hill manage without?

5/19/2007 1:46 PM  
Blogger Dave said...


I guess the GAM has to start somewhere. Any step in the right direction is a good one, I think.

5/19/2007 2:32 PM  
Blogger The Observer said...

I am glad to hear about this. Some measurment should be taken in order to plant this kind of culture in us.

5/20/2007 10:23 AM  
Blogger MommaBean said...

very fine idea. And, Kinzi, look at it this way, once they clean up the streets there will be less to obstruct the crazy drivers' view :). Funny story about littering in Jordan... Many years ago, Jiddo Bean's mechanic had stopped at a light with his window open and saw the guy in the next car toss a pepsi can out. He was rather offended by this littering, so he picked the can up off the street, reached through their open window and deposited it in the floor board of the offending car. Maybe more of us should do this and the litterers would get the point :).

5/24/2007 9:17 AM  

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