With South Australia, the first state to ban key single-use plastic items such as straws, cutlery and beverage stirrers – it’s now urgent other states also move on this plastic pollution, the Boomerang Alliance of 52 groups said today.
‘We congratulate the South Australian Government on this ground-breaking legislation. Queensland and the ACT have legislation before their Parliaments, and we look forward to similar legislation in Western Australia and NSW later this year,’ said Jeff Angel, Director of the Boomerang Alliance.
‘These plastic items are amongst the most littered and represent a major threat to the environment and to wildlife. They all have available and better alternatives.’
The ban, which passed yesterday and will come into effect in 2021, also addresses the use of polystyrene plates, cups, bowls and containers, another Australian first.
There will be exemptions for people who require single-use plastic straws due to a disability or medical condition.
The Boomerang Alliance runs the successful Plastic Free SA program, which assists food retailers to switch away from single-use plastic takeaway items, including those items that fall under the ban. In 2020, despite COVID-19 restrictions, members of the program have removed nearly 400,000 single-use plastic items. Successful programs operate in several other states.
‘Our program shows that switching to better alternatives such as reusable and compostable items is very achievable, and many of our members do so while reducing costs and waste’.
Update: Queensland’s proposed ban on single-use plastics
Further to our previous news story, the Queensland legislation was ready to go before parliament for a vote but was not tabled on the last sitting day prior to the election. The next opportunity will now be after the election in December or early in 2021.
Wildlife Queensland encourages its members and supporters to send a message about the proposed legislation to ban single-use plastics to Leeanne Enoch, Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Minister for Science, and Minister for the Arts and David Crisafulli, Shadow Minister for Tourism, Shadow Minister for Environment, Science and the Great Barrier Reef – as per the below.
Message to Leeanne Enoch:
Dear Leeanne Enoch,
I noticed the proposed ban on certain plastic items has not gone through Parliament. Can you promise it will if you are re-elected (including a ban on polystyrene products)?
Message to David Crisafulli:
Dear David Crisafulli,
I know that the LNP supports more action on single-use plastics. Will you promise to pass the current legislation on plastics (including a ban on polystyrene) in the next term of Parliament?