Boomerang Alliance Newsletter - December 2022

December 2022

A new Federal Government – moving from promises and policy to action?

The Albanese Government came to power in May 2022 on a platform of change. For those of us looking for more positives on plastic pollution that meant at least a couple of things. Internationally we wanted Australia to sign a treaty on plastic pollution and to take the high ambition path proposed by the Europeans. This looks likely.

Domestically we want the Commonwealth, as they promised in Opposition, to introduce new regulations on packaging that makes producers responsible. The recent collapse of the REDcycle collection program, has dramatically illustrated why this is essential. We also need national standards on reusable, compostable and recyclable products and packaging. The standards have to ensure that products marked as such are actually reused, composted or recycled.

Lastly, we need more from the Commonwealth National Plastic Plan. For example the Plan announced in 2021, identified bans on oxo-degradable and polystyrene foodware and loose packaging as well as PVC labels. These were supposed to be in place in 2022. As we write nothing has been achieved. It should have a major revision, including mandatory targets.

We are looking for more positive leadership and significant policy change from this new government and we will be working to make sure this happens.

Jeff Angel


The good news is that all state and territory governments have now introduced or plan to introduce bans on many problem single use plastics. However, the reality is that the pace of change remains slow and could be a lot quicker. This is despite the fact that the problem of single use plastic waste is well recognised; the alternative products and practice are readily available; and the public have continued to demonstrate significant support for more action.

This year, Western Australia continued its comprehensive policy agenda with South Australia, Queensland and the ACT adding to their policies. For the first time NSW took action, becoming the last state to ban lightweight plastic bags (July 2022) and new bans in November. Victoria followed suit and will implement bans in February 2023. Both Tasmania and the NT have promised to act before 2025.

Some governments have published schedules and roadmaps to outline what they intend to do and when. Something we encourage all governments to do. It helps to provide time to adapt to the changes.



The Boomerang Alliance has called on all Australian governments to introduce new policies to stop the greenwashed heavier weight shopping bags and end disposable coffee cups with lids. These are the two items we hear most about from supporters and the general public. 


State and territory governments have decided to include wine, spirit, cordial and juice bottles into the successful Container Refund Schemes (CRS) across Australia. NSW is intending to be the first to act but has come up against strong lobbying from the wine industry.


The collapse of the REDcycle soft plastic collection service involving major supermarkets has exposed Australia's poor record on plastic recycling. Of the estimated 150,000 tonnes of soft plastic waste generated just by households every year, REDCycle was collecting about 7000 tonnes.


Our Plastic Free Places program is active across Australia and has helped businesses eliminate over 16 million pieces of single-use plastic. 2022 has been a big year for the program, but 2023 is set to be even bigger.


Our campaigner Lisa Wriley is saying goodbye after being with the Boomerang Alliance for 12 years. "Changes didn’t just happen because governments thought it was a good idea. They happened because we kept pushing them and we made it happen."


We would not have been able to do all these works without you, who support us by making a donation, signing a petition, sharing our social media posts and sending us words of encouragement. We still have much work to do in 2023 and we hope you will continue to support us.

Please donate so we can continue our fight against plastic pollution.