Every morning, I tell myself how fortunate I am that the first view I have from my 11th floor condo is of Lake Ontario in Port Credit, Mississauga. It provides ample opportunity for recreation, and in my neighbourhood, there are trails and waterside parks galore. When I walk these trails and scour these parks for litter left by individuals, I am constantly baffled by the thoughtlessness of those who leave their trash behind. I find a staggering number of coffee cups, plastic bottles, bags, various types of food packaging and cigarette butts tucked away in the bushes or among the rocks. What I just don't get, is this: the people leaving this trash behind are presumably at the lake to enjoy it's beauty. Yet there seems to be a disconnect, and they don't realize that by littering, they are destroying this beauty for others, and they are contributing to the destruction of the quality of the water.
Beyond the issue of litter, is the concern over water quality with the dumping of sewage, storm water run-off, agricultural runoff, and microbeads all contributing to the degradation of all of the Great Lakes. I love my lake, but I am fearful of swimming in it at this point, and wonder if there will come a day when we can safely jump in to Lake Ontario again.