Clean Up Australia has published its Rubbish Report 2015, finding Victoria remains the most littered state despite some improvement.
The environmental action group has published each Australian state’s report during the past week.
In 2015, Victorian volunteers reported an average of 368 pieces of rubbish removed per clean up site compared with 526 in 2014, representing a 31% improvement.
Beverage containers topped the list of grouped items, increasing their prevalence by 3.9% to nearly 27%.
Volunteers collected from 1,425 sites (1,219 in 2014) removing 3,135 tonnes of rubbish (2,681.8 tonnes in 2014).
Commenting on the findings, Ian Kiernan AO, Chairman and Founder of Clean Up Australia, said: “Victorians are drowning in litter that can be avoided by introducing recycling initiatives such as a container refund scheme and banning the senseless use of single use plastic bags and packaging.”
Queensland was the second-dirtiest state, with plastics the major source of rubbish at 41%, representing an increase of 12% over the previous year. Volunteers removed 3,108 tonnes of rubbish from 1,413 sites – an increase of more than 23%.
The report writers said action to reduce beverage containers and plastic could improve the litter reported in the state.
New South Wales improved its rubbish count by 24%, with the highest number of items per site being at shopping malls.
However, Mr Kiernan AO called for those living in NSW to lobby Premier Mike Baird for the introduction of an incentive-based container refund scheme, as per his election promise, and a ban on single-use plastic bags.
In Western Australia, volunteers cleaned up 566 sites compared with 425 in 2014, removing over 1,200 tonnes of rubbish against 935 tonnes the previous year. Clean Up volunteers reported an average item count of 485 in WA bushland, then roadways were the next most polluted sites, with an average of 354 items per location.
Access to each state’s Rubbish Report 2015 can be accessed from the Clean Up Australia website.