A game-changer for local authorities: an interview with LitterLotto

The Net Zero Places Innovation Network recently spoke with LitterLotto about their innovative app designed to tackle the litter problem.

About LitterLotto

LitterLotto is an award-winning app designed to reduce littering by incentivising the public to pop their litter in the bin rather than the street.

About the Net Zero Places Innovation Network

The Net Zero Places Innovation Network supports local authorities with their Net Zero journey, and engages with many businesses across a wide range of sectors to support them in public sector procurement. It aims to bring the latest products and services to the forefront, to ensure local authorities are aware of the innovations being developed across the UK.

Screenshots of litterlotto app and website

Thank you for joining us today. To start, could you give us an overview of what LitterLotto is and how it works?

Absolutely! LitterLotto is an innovative multi award winning app designed to tackle the litter problem by incentivising people to dispose of their litter responsibly. Users simply use the app to take a picture as they bin litter and that’s their entry into the big cash prize draw. The more litter they bin, the more chances they have to win. To date, over 19 million pieces of litter have been binned through the App.

That sounds like a unique approach. What are some of the main benefits for local authorities using LitterLotto?

There are several key benefits for local authorities. Firstly, it helps reduce littering, leading to cleaner streets and public spaces. This can improve the overall quality of life for residents and make the area more attractive to visitors. Secondly, by promoting responsible behaviour, it can reduce the costs associated with litter collection and waste management. Lastly, it engages the community in a positive way, fostering a sense of pride and responsibility towards their local environment.

How does LitterLotto ensure that the litter is properly disposed of and not just moved from one place to another?

Great question. The app uses AI to check each entry’s legitimate whilst also checking for all types of fraud. We’ve seen it all! Only valid entries can ever win the jackpot – and even then they go through a rigorous check by our panel to ensure they’re genuine. This helps maintain the integrity of the program and ensures that litter is indeed being properly disposed of.

Can you share any success stories or case studies where LitterLotto has been implemented effectively?

Certainly! We’ve got loads of great case studies, one example being our partnership with Buckinghamshire Council. The campaign type was for the local authority and ran for 13 months, starting in November 2022. They used press, bin stickers, socials, public events, and newsletters to households to promote the app. They guaranteed local winners with a £250 monthly cash jackpot- The results were impressive:

  • Over 191,000 pieces of litter binned.
  • 160 monthly active users.
  • Operational estimated savings of £17,000 per month and £145,000 per annum.

Another example is our proof-of-concept campaign with McDonald’s in Dundee. This campaign lasted for 3 weeks in April 2022 and was promoted through press, local stores, and socials. The campaign had a guaranteed local winner with a £1000 bonus jackpot. The results were:

  • 28,412 pieces of litter binned.
  • 1225 app downloads.

What kind of support does LitterLotto offer to local authorities who are interested in implementing the app?

We offer comprehensive support to ensure a smooth implementation. This includes helping with the initial setup, providing promotional materials to raise awareness, and offering ongoing technical support. We also work closely with local authorities to tailor the app to their specific needs and ensure it integrates seamlessly with their existing waste management systems.

How does the prize system work, and what kind of rewards can participants expect?

The prize system is designed to be simple yet motivating. Each time a user uploads a valid photo of litter being disposed of, they earn an entry into a prize draw. As well as the big cash weekly jackpot, we also offer instant-win prizes of virtual coins which can be redeemed against a variety of rewards and other prize-draws. The prizes can include cash, vouchers, and other incentives, making the act of binning litter both rewarding and fun. For instance, in Buckinghamshire, participants had the chance to win a £250 monthly cash jackpot, (ensuring local winners) as well as the national prizes.

Could you elaborate on the hidden value of volunteers using LitterLotto and the potential cost savings for councils?

Certainly! Volunteers using LitterLotto not only help keep their communities clean but also contribute to significant cost savings. Based on our surveys from August 2023, the average user spends about 8.7 hours per month picking litter. Given the average monthly salary for an operative to pick litter is £12, the formula for calculating savings is:

8.7 hours × £12 = £ 104.40.

This translates to a savings of £104.40 per user per month for councils. These savings come from reduced labor costs and the avoidance of other operational expenses associated with litter management.

Finally, what is the cost for local authorities to implement LitterLotto, and what kind of return on investment can they expect?

The cost for implementing LitterLotto varies depending on the size and needs of the local authority. We offer flexible pricing models to accommodate different budgets. In terms of return on investment, authorities can expect to see savings in litter collection and waste management costs, as well as indirect benefits such as increased tourism and improved community satisfaction. For example, Buckinghamshire Council saw estimated operational savings of £17,000 per month, translating to £145,000 per annum. The positive impact on the environment and local economy can be substantial.

Thank you for sharing this insightful information. It’s clear that LitterLotto offers a valuable solution for local authorities looking to combat littering and promote a cleaner, more responsible community. How can we find out more?

Thank you for having us. We’re excited to continue working with local authorities to make a positive impact on our environment. If you would like to find out more please visit our website litterlotto.com or contact Carly Di Crescienzo our Waste Partnerships Manager on 07799008430 or carly@peasy.com

Simon de Garis

Our Expert

Simon de Garis

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Related programme

Net Zero Places Innovation Network

Net Zero Places Innovation Network

Making net zero a reality in the UK by supporting local/regional authorities to achieve their net zero ambitions by connecting, collaborating, sharing experiences and adopting innovation.


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