Globally 95% of all plastic packaging is used once and then wasted, often as litter. In its 2014 Marine Debris report in Australia, the CSIRO stated that, ‘two thirds of the marine debris found along our coastline is plastic, most from local sources.’
But...Australia is changing
In Australia, most state governments are moving to reduce plastic litter through the introduction of Container Deposit Schemes and bans on plastic bags. These measures have been shown to dramatically reduce plastic litter and are recognised as good first steps in addressing plastic pollution of our environment.
The next step
The next step is to address the many other forms of disposable plastics. Plastic litter in the environment is an eyesore, a pollutant, a threat to wildlife and, according to recent reports, a potential threat to human health.
Many individuals and businesses have become aware of the plastic pollution problem and are changing practices. However, we need whole communities taking control of their plastic footprint, with a focus on long lasting solutions.
Empowering communities to make a difference
Plastic Free Cairns is the sixth community under the Boomerang Alliance's 'Plastic Free Places program, which focuses on the next step to achieving this wide-scale change. Other projects occur in Noosa (Qld), Byron Bay (NSW), Perth (WA) and Adelaide (SA). We are also running the project in Townsville (Qld) alongside Cairns.
These communities are playing a vital role in the next stage towards fighting against plastic pollution, leading the way in showing what can be achieved when a community works together - and are empowering other communities to follow.
Plastic Free Cairns
The goal of Plastic Free Cairns is to reduce single-use plastic packaging by engaging food outlets in Cairns and assisting them to switch to better alternatives.
To learn more about how we achieve this, check out the Plastic Free Cairns Plan.