A new campaign has been launched by Sunshine Coast Council to encourage locals and holiday makers alike to show their love of the region’s iconic local beaches and waterways by disposing thoughtfully of litter.
Environment Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay said a survey of Sunshine Coast residents found that 96% of respondents think litter is a problem and are concerned about it.
Their reasons for concern ranged from impacts on the natural environment and wildlife to the effects on local tourism, and reduction of amenity in local neighbourhoods.
“Approximately 75% said they personally had never littered and 34% had participated in an organised clean-up effort in the past two years,” Cr McKay said.
“We were also very encouraged by results that found 96% of respondents have seen someone else clean up litter and 98% have cleaned up litter of their own accord.”
Cigarette butts, fast food packaging and beverage containers were some of the most common types of litter reported, while the most common locations included Mooloolaba, the Sunshine Motorway, Maroochydore and Kings Beach.
The findings of the survey helped to develop the new campaign which will be rolled out across the region over coming months and was produced in conjunction with local students at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
Council will also participate in a free trial of a new solar-powered, compacting bin on the Mooloolaba foreshore.
The smart bin has a sensor that triggers the compaction of rubbish to ensure the bin does not overflow during the busy holiday period.
“We will be conducting a free trial of this auto-compacting, solar-powered bin for the next six months, before assessing its suitability for other areas,” Cr McKay said.
“We are also trialling sensor technology in many busy streets and parks to identify how full bins are, helping council to reduce the likelihood of overflowing bins and unnecessary servicing of empty bins.
“We know that most local residents and visitors choose to live and holiday in this wonderful region to enjoy our natural environment, and in particularly during the summer months, our gorgeous beaches are a great place to relax with friends and family.
“We’re asking everyone to show just how much their love their favourite spots on the Coast by disposing of litter and rubbish in one of our 3000 public bins.
“We have so many amazing community volunteer groups who work tirelessly to help keep our communities clean and tidy, particularly our beaches during turtle season.
“We are putting the call out to the wider community to support those efforts and work with us to keep our region in pristine condition for all of us to enjoy.”