What is the Community Appearance Index & Why is it Important?
This month, KDB completed its annual Community Appearance Index, which is a visual litter scan to determine how littered our community is (or appears to be) and where coordinated community cleanup efforts should take place. Two teams, made up of volunteers, KDB board members, and staff, teamed up to score litter prevalence along ninety-six different roadway “zones” in Denton. As an affiliate organization of Keep America Beautiful (KAB), we must complete the Community Appearance Index each year, along with a comprehensive cost-benefit report, to remain an affiliate in good standing.
Each zone was rated by district covering 96 roadway zones
How Does the Rating Scale Work?
Keep America Beautiful (KAB) designed a rating scale to determine rate of litter prevalence on a scale of 1 to 4, with “1” indicating the least littered and “4” being extremely littered. The highest score of “4” on the scale indicates extreme litter prevalence, to the point of requiring a coordinated community cleanup effort or even contractor removal of large dumped items.
Litter Index Scale 1: Minimal or No Litter
Litter Index Scale 2: Slightly Littered
Litter Index Scale 3: Littered
Litter Index Scale 4: Extremely Littered
This year, Denton’s overall score increased slightly from 1.4 to 1.5 (on a scale of 1 to 4). Looking at the scores by voting district, District 4 averaged on the low end, with a score of 1.1, while District 2 saw an increase from 1.5 to 2 due to some illegal dump sites.
What Does this Mean?
While it’s difficult to attribute the increase to a single cause, growing population numbers, weather conditions (wind, rain), and frequency of litter cleanup efforts can all play a role in increasing observable rates of litter. Overall, 1.5 is an excellent rating, and we are proud of how clean Denton looks. However, we did see some areas where we’ll need to coordinate more cleanup efforts in the future to ensure our community is the best it can be.
How YOU Can Help
- Organize a special cleanup with friends in Denton – we’ll provide free supplies and point you in the right direction.
- Adopt a spot in Denton! Adopt-A-Spot partners are assigned a mile of roadway and are responsible for keeping it litter-free year-round.
- Pick up litter as you walk or ride around Denton. This is one of the easiest things you can do every day. Take a bag with you when you go on a walk, and pick up what you can. Join Reverse Litter‘s effort to pick up “Ten on Tuesday!”
- Don’t litter! This is a given, but just in case you’ve forgotten…make sure you put your trash where it belongs – in the trash or recycle container. And don’t forget, cigarette butts are litter too, in fact, the most littered item in the country.