Did you know that Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) is the busiest mountain in the country and one of the busiest in the world? Climbed by over half a million people each year, its popularity has never been greater. However, with this continued increase in visitor numbers, litter is becoming a real threat to the sustainability of our most loved mountain.
Plastic waste in particular can regularly be found littering the mountain paths, and if left unchecked, the problem will only worsen over time. ‘Plastic Free’ Yr Wyddfa is a project by Eryri (Snowdonia) National Park and is an important and ambitious step in protecting the mountain’s sustainable future.
Our volunteer wardens on Yr Wyddfa collected half a tonne of rubbish from the mountain in 2022. This included drinks bottles, takeaway coffee cups, sweet and crisp wrappers, cigarette butts and wet wipes (yes, these all contain plastics!)
So what can we do about it?
We can all take some simple actions to reduce our impact on the mountain – here are just a few suggestions:
- Refill before the hill Instead of buying single use plastic bottles, bring a reusable one and fill it up before your mountain day.
- No litter is too small Wipes, tissues and cigarettes butts are still litter.
- Fruit waste is litter too! All organic waste is rubbish. Banana skins and orange peels take much longer to biodegrade at altitude and with the volume of walkers on the mountain, we’d end up with a mini-mountain of fruit waste. Please take your peels home with you.
- Go Reusable Challenge your shopping habits and bring your food and drinks in reusable containers. It’s better for the planet and less likely to be blown away in the wind.
- Plan ahead – Think about what you’re bringing with you and how you can make your visit plastic free.