Cigarette butts and takeaway containers are some of the litter items being targeted as part of $2 million in successful grants provided by the New South Wales Government to tackle litter across the state.
Under the first round of the Litter Prevention Grants Program, 23 projects led by councils, TAFEs and community groups have launched across regional and metropolitan New South Wales.
Arminda Ryan, Executive Director for Programs and Innovation, said the grants play a vital role in driving the state towards reducing plastic litter in the environment by 30 per cent by 2025, and 60 per cent of all littered items by 2030.
“Reducing litter and marine debris requires a significant statewide effort,” said Ryan. “These programs pay off – we’ve had a 43 per cent reduction in New South Wales’s litter volumes since 2014. Changing our behaviour to embrace responsible management of our environment has positive long-term impacts.”
Larger projects will focus on change at an industry level, such as Take 3 for the Sea, which was awarded almost $450,000 for its Visitor Economy Industry (VEI) Litter Prevention Project. The charity is dedicated to fighting plastic pollution with a simple act; pick up three pieces of litter and dispose of it correctly.
The VEI Litter Prevention Project will allow Take 3 for the Sea to deliver the Ground Swell Litter Prevention Program for the Visitor Economy.
Jenny-Lee Scharnboeck, Head of Business Development for Take 3, said Ground Swell provides a tailored platform for collaboration and consultation, including helpful resources and guidance for how the tourism sector can reduce litter impacts – especially plastic – in holiday locations around the state.
“Participating in the Ground Swell Program enables businesses to identify the cause of litter challenges, and weave litter prevention into their visitor-facing narrative through positive involvement and storytelling,” Scharnboeck said.
“This helps to build a connection among New South Wales visitors so that they dispose of their litter appropriately and prevent it entering our oceans and waterways.”
Other grant recipients will address cigarette butt litter, clean-up local litter hotspots, install signage and bins, run community awareness and education campaigns, and develop local litter prevention strategies.
This funding is part of $10 million allocated under the State Government’s Waste and Sustainable Materials Strategy 2041 for litter prevention.
Further grant funding is available for intake three of the Litter Prevention Grant program – expressions of interest are now open via the NSW EPA website.
A full list of grant recipients, locations and projects is available on the EPA website here: https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/working-together/grants/litter-prevention-grants-program/grants-available