10 December, 2020
Single-use plastics are one of the biggest environmental threats of our time. On average, Australians use 130 kilograms of plastic per person each year and only nine per cent of that is recycled. More frightening still, up to 130,000 tonnes of plastic will find its way into our waterways and into the ocean. This needs to be urgently addressed. In Warringah we have several organisations actively trying to reduce the amount of single-use plastics in our oceans and environment: Strawkel, where people snorkel and look for rubbish; Pittwater Eco Adventures, that encourages people to pick up plastic rubbish on stand-up paddleboards; and the Seabin Project, that sucks in plastic rubbish floating on the water surface. We have developed the Warringah Roadmap to Zero which is also addressing how households in Warringah can reduce their use of plastics and, ultimately, omissions across many sectors.
Today I met with Zero Co, a company challenging the use of single-use plastics. Their goal is to prevent one million plastic bottles being thrown away in the next 12 months and they have already prevented 714,650 so far. In South Australia, they recently banned plastic cutlery and straws. That was hailed as historic. We need to see this type of legislation across all states and territories and we need to lead that federally.