Globally, 95% of all plastic packaging is used once and then discarded, often as litter. In its 2014 report on Marine Debris in Australia, the CSIRO found that three quarters of the marine debris found along our coastline is plastic, most from local sources.
RESEARCHERS ESTIMATE THAT IF THIS TREND CONTINUES THERE WILL BE MORE PLASTIC THAN FISH IN THE OCEAN (BY WEIGHT) BY 2050.
In Australia, most state governments are introducing container deposit schemes and plastic bag bans, which are good first steps to addressing the problem. The next step is to address the many other forms of problematic single-use plastics, like coffee cups, water bottles, straws, takeaway containers etc.
WHAT WE NEED ARE WHOLE COMMUNITIES TAKING A SYSTEMATIC APPROACH TO REDUCE SINGLE-USE PLASTIC PACKAGING, WITH A FOCUS ON LONG LASTING SOLUTIONS.
The Plastic Free Places program fills this gap by working in communities to directly reduce these single-use plastic items, and to empower the community to make lasting changes towards a circular economy. The program is a comprehensive system that can be implemented in any community by Boomerang Alliance in partnership with local stakeholders, and has demonstrated strong consumer support. We have 3 current projects - our pilot project Plastic Free Noosa, and two other projects; Plastic Free Byron - Make the Switch and WA Plastic Free (Perth).
In a nutshell, we work directly with food retailers, events, markets, and other organisations and assist them to switch from single-use plastics to better alternatives, such as reusable (preferred) or compostable items. But that's just the beginning. We also work with council, suppliers, manufacturers, waste transport operators and composters to deliver real solutions to businesses and to the community.
SOUNDS SIMPLE? THAT'S BECAUSE WE WORK HARD TO MAKE IT LOOK THAT WAY!
Most of our work to successfully run the program occurs behind the scenes. Ensuring that the right partnerships are in place, addressing barriers to transition, facilitating composting solutions and providing the right advice and value to businesses is fundamental to our success.
AFTER 17 MONTHS, PLASTIC FREE NOOSA HAS ELIMINATED OVER 3 MILLION PLASTIC ITEMS, AND THIS CONTINUES TO INCREASE.
In 2019 we aim to expand the program to more communities across Australia.
Or learn more about the program in our OVERVIEW DOCUMENT.
OUR PLASTIC FREE PLACES COMMUNITIES
VIEW OUR COMMUNITY REPORTS
COULD YOUR COMMUNITY BE NEXT?
Are you a community also looking to reduce your plastic footprint? Below is an an overview of our program, to get you started.