September 30, 2010
Garbage bills plan
MORE action from the State and Federal Governments is needed to solve the recurring problem of garbage left on beaches and public areas, according to a local environmental activist.
Keelah Lam, of Fairlight, who is a community representative on Manly Council’s waste committee, believes the fields of litter frequently left in popular tourist destinations, such as Manly beach and The Corso, need to be addressed with the manufacturers and fast food outlets that produce it.
“Manly Council’s hands are tied, all they can do is spend ratepayers’ money to rake the beach,” she said.
“It’s a problem that needs to go right back to the source, which is the manufacturer. Extending producer responsibility means that industry will need to pick up the tab for dumping.
“They’ve been allowed to produce all this packing, but at the moment the community has to pick up the tab.”
Ms Lam said an industry-funded container deposit scheme, such as the one used in South Australia, should be introduced to place a value on used packaging and reduce litter.
South Australia introduced container deposit legislation in 1977, which allows residents to collect 10 cents for every beverage container they return to a recycling depot.
According to the state’s Environmental Protection Authority, the scheme has resulted in “significantly less beverage container litter and higher recycling rates of beverage containers than any other state”.
But NSW Environment Minister Frank Sartor was lukewarm on introducing a similar scheme.
A spokeswoman for the minister said the state’s litter rates were not “significantly different to those in SA”.
“(Our) view is that schemes like container deposit legislation should be managed at the national level ... however, a national container deposit scheme is the most expensive option,” she said.
Manly State Liberal MP Mike Baird said he was “very supportive” of introducing a container deposit scheme in NSW.