The Effects of Littering: Many Innocent Animals Killed due to Littering

Visible trash and plastic on the ground next to the trash bin.

I remember being in 7th grade; I never realized what is going around me with garbage/trash on the floor. One day in 7th grade a group of people working with animals showed the class a PowerPoint based on littering. She led a disturbing image of a pigeon cut open to see his digestive system and it was nothing but garbage on the side of the road. The class was dead silent as the team presented the issues with littering, you would be able to hear a pin drop down the hallways and after this day I never saw the world as the same before walking into the class.

Being a kid you don’t realize what is going on around us and how one small change can make a huge difference. Littering not only affects the animals but also affects the environment. The causes of littering are more serious than we thought, especially being a kid in middle school. Littering causes pollution and global warming because trash and plastic do not break down over time. What is Litter? How many animals are affected by litter? Does littering affect only animals? How does littering affect not only animals but our enviorment?

Litter is simply trash but in the wrong place, trash can be in many places. Where trash does not belong is on the ground, in oceans, rivers, and blowing in the air. Many people agree that littering isn’t a pretty look, but most people do not understand the legal, economic, and safety issues that are involved with littering. According to the article, Litter Facts, and Myths, “Every year, PennDOT spends millions of dollars cleaning up litter. ” PennDOT supports Pennsylvania roads, highways, as well as roadway construction; Oversees motor vehicle protection and emission inspection programs. Most people do not know about littering fines, littering is against the law! In addition to the article, Litter Facts, and Myths, Every year in Pennsylvania, numerous car accidents are caused by littering. When children go to the playground to play, they would fall onto the litter, which would cause a cut on the child, therefore medical assistance would be needed. 

Not only littering affects humans, but it also affects animals as well. How we dispose of trash impacts the life around us, yet people still leave trash on the side of the road. According to the article, How Littering Harms Animals, how we dispose of our garbage has affected the animals, by disposing of our trash safely instead of littering, we all are making a choice that affects the animals. In addition in the article, Animals – The Innocent Victims of Litter, ”Researchers estimate over one million animals die each year after becoming entrapped in or ingesting litter. The common killer of animals is plastic litter, notably impacting marine animals…many more deaths remain unrecorded.” (2021)

This issue hasn’t just occurred recently, littering has been taking place for years! Carlow notes that littering has been taking over places across the world and is an issue that environmentalists have been facing for years. (2021) The amount of undisputed trash that ends up in the streets and waterways affects not only animals but also plant growth. In addition in the article, Harmful effects of Litter, Littering causes stunted growth of plants and trash goes into the water source that we drink. if we as a community start to pick up after ourselves and dispose of the trash correctly, many animals wouldn’t have died if we dispose of and have cleaner water where we drink from. We all live on this planet, so why destroy our only home? After all, Americans get the stereotype of being lazy and arrogant.

Work Cited 

“Animals – The Innocent Victims of Litter “Guilford County, NC.County News, 17 Feb. 2021,,becoming%20entangled%20or%20eating%20plastic.


Carlow, Love. “How Does Litter Affect Our Community?.” – County Carlow Community Website, 29 Nov. 2021,,kept%20away%20from%20thriving%20communities. 

“Harmful Effects of Litter.” Plano, Texas.,or%20plastic%206%2Dring%20holders.

“Litter and Animals – Preventing Injury from Rubbish.” RSPCA, 


“Litter Facts and Myths.” Pennsylvania Department of Transportation,