Step 2 for net-wrap scourge: Pick up what’s already there

Ozark County Times, I salute you for publishing the opinion piece on the scourge of net wrap along our county roads (“County-wide bad [w)rap: Are you the livestock feeder who’s littering our county with plastic-netting hay wrap?” Times, Feb. 21]! Thank you for addressing this issue in such a public manner. As a farmer myself, I’ve considered writing about the problem but had not taken the time to do it. Instead, I just opted to pick up wads of net wrap along the roadsides in my neighborhood, trying to do my bit to solve the problem.
Farmers get a bad (w)rap so often. We’re accused of damaging the environment in many ways, and often, the accusations are baseless. But it only takes one honest example to give us a bad reputation, and in this case, the accusation is spot on. No one except a farmer would have access to a bundle of used net wrap, so the blame for this sort of littering falls squarely upon our shoulders.
As we drove to church yesterday morning, I started counting and stopped when I got to 30 – 30 unsightly wads of net wrap along a five-mile stretch of Highway 5.
The Times’ article provided the first part of the solution: for the guilty parties to handle their net wrap debris in the proper way. I’d add Step 2: pick up what is already out there, even if you aren’t guilty of this crime against our environment. If every farmer driving down a road picked up a half-dozen of these eyesores, it would soon not be a problem.
So when you see my pickup pulled over along the roadside, give me the right of way. It only takes a minute to stop and grab that hateful wad. I’ll be doing my part.

Janet Taber, Almartha

Ozark County Times

504 Third Steet
PO Box 188
Gainesville, MO 65655

Phone: (417) 679-4641
Fax: (417) 679-3423