By Julia Hillegass
Public Communications and Community Affairs Administrator
Elementary schools in Isle of Wight County have collected more than 60 pounds of plastic bags since the start of the school year---that’s over 4600 bags! It’s all a part of a friendly competition bringing attention to the problem of plastic bag litter in the county. The contest runs until Earth Day, with the winning schools receiving a pizza or ice cream party to celebrate. The contest is coordinated by the county’s Isle Be Green effort.
Isle of Wight County’s agricultural community has been greatly impacted by plastic bag litter. The plastic becomes entangled in crops, mainly cotton, and contaminates it. This “trash” cannot be eliminated through the ginning process, causing the grade, or quality, of the cotton to be reduced. The County is also aware that a calf died after ingesting a plastic bag, which was littered onto a farmer’s pasture. Plastic bag litter also has negative impacts on the health of the Chesapeake Bay, economic vitality, and the aesthetic appeal of local communities throughout Hampton Roads.
Students from Windsor Elementary School show off the plastic bags they've collected.