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Plastic waste cut by third

It was good to read this week that our recycling and waste-reducing efforts are paying off, finally, with new research by Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, showing that Australian coastal plastic pollution has decreased by 29% since 2013.

CSIRO researcher and paper co-author, Dr Denise Hardesty, said the research shows how quickly change could happen when effective waste management strategies were deployed.

“For example, household collection services, where there are multiple waste and recycling streams, makes it easier for community members to separate and discard their waste appropriately,” said Dr Hardesty.

“Our research showed that increases in waste levies had the second largest effect on decreases in coastal plastic pollution. Local governments are moving away from a collect-and-dump mindset to a sort-and-improve approach.”

Clean-up activities, such as Clean Up Australia Day and surveillance programs that directly involved members of the community were also found to be effective.

“Increasing community stewardship of the local environment and beaches has huge benefits”, Dr Hardesty said.

“Not only does our coastline become cleaner, but people are more inclined to look out for bad behaviour, even using dumping hotlines to report illegal polluting activity.”

The study also showed municipalities that did not update their waste management strategies over time, or who removed their budget for coastal waste management had ‘dirtier coastlines’ over the six-year study period.

On the other hand, municipalities that improved information about waste management on their website and increased coastal waste budgetary efforts showed a significant drop in plastic pollution along their coastline.

About Adam Nobel

Principal
M. Bus, Grad Dip Adv, B.Int Bus, LREA

adam@hugoalexander.com.au

0417 007 001

Adam is the founder and Principal of Hugo Alexander Property Group. With a previous career in advertising, 20 years experience in property investment, and 14 years in Brisbane real estate, he knows the market inside out to ensure his clients grow their wealth faster.

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