From Iceland — “Chew Away” Campaign Keeps Reykjavík’s Streets Clean

“Chew Away” Campaign Keeps Reykjavík’s Streets Clean

Published September 28, 2020

Photo by
Guðjón Óskarsson

Since July, seventy year old Guðjón Óskarsson has cleaned 18,000 pieces of chewing gum from off the streets of Reykjavík, MBL reports.

You may have seen the “Chew Away!” signs around town, displayed by Guðjón to draw attention to the habit people have of spitting their gum onto the pavements. He hopes that people start to think twice before spitting in the future. He explains “It’s the huge amount of nicotine gum that’s difficult. It’s much harder to remove than normal chewing gum.”

Since starting his project, Guðjón has been given the full support of the city council, who have now hired him as a contractor to continue his work, at least for the next few months. The extension of his contract will be reviewed in the spring. He uses a special cleaning device, which heats water and soap up to 102 degrees and melts and loosens the hard gum.

Guðjón says he started the campaign after losing his job in the tourism industry earlier this year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

You can find out more about Guðjón’s campaign herex.

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