Did you know that 15,000 tonnes of litter is removed from our region's waterways by Sunshine Coast Council staff and volunteers each year?
That's the equivalent of six elephants.
Ahead of Australia Day celebrations, and as an everyday reminder, council urges the community to make every day litter free.
Environment Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay is a strong advocate of keeping our region healthy and clean and says we all need to do our part to help on a regular basis.
"It is imperative for not only the safety and health of our community to keep the Sunshine Coast litter free, but also for our much loved wildlife and beautiful natural areas," Cr McKay said.
"While celebrating this weekend, and every day for that matter, I encourage everyone to please be mindful of your rubbish.
"Please do the responsible thing and dispose of your landfill waste and recyclables into the appropriate bins.
"Our council provides approximately 3,300 public place bins across the region, and while those regularly have 11,200 services per week, during the holidays this increases to 15,220 services per week.
"These bins include general waste collection as well as special bins for recycling, cigarette butts, fishing lines and more.
"We know that cigarette butts, fast food packaging and microplastics, including balloons, are some of the worst culprits, so please remember to put your rubbish in the bin, or you could face some heavy penalties.
"And for those looking to do more to help keep our region clean, join us on Saturday, February 8 for the seventh annual Clean Up for the Hatchlings event at which we'll clean up beaches and waterways across the region and then meet up for a BBQ and rubbish sorting at La Balsa Park."
Littering is the unlawful deposit of any type of waste material that is less than 200 litres in volume. Anything greater in quantity is considered illegal dumping.
Penalties apply per the State Government's Waste Reduction and Recycling Act 2011, and can range from $266 to more than $100,000 for individuals based on the type of littering or illegal dumping.
For more information about Sunshine Coast Council's waste and recycling services, please visit council's website, https://www.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au/Living-and-Community/Waste-and-Recycling.
To register for or learn more about the upcoming Clean Up for the Hatchlings event, please visit council's What's On website, https://www.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au/Experience-Sunshine-Coast/Events/Whats-On/3564.