NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian should follow the lead of Brisbane City Council and introduce an immediate ban on plastic straws, plastic bottles and releasing balloons at events held at Parliament House and all government-owned venues.
NSW Greens Marine spokesperson Justin Field said the NSW Government could make a big difference through a plastic phase-out and end to balloon releases.
“The Greens call on the Premier to announce a ban on plastic straws, plastic bottles and helium balloon releases at government events as a great first step towards stopping and reversing the rising tide of plastic pollution,” he said today.
“I’ve just returned from Lord Howe Island where baby flesh-footed shearwater birds are being mistakenly fed our plastic waste by their parents, leading to developmental problems and the death of many juveniles.
“Scientists often find dozens of pieces of plastic in the stomachs of birds, including bottle tops and balloon ties. It’s heartbreaking to know that our waste is causing the death of up to 10 percent of young shearwaters.
“NSW lags behind other Australian states and territories in the ambition of initiatives to reduce plastic pollution. NSW is the only Australian state or territory without a commitment to ban single-use plastic. It also risks being left further behind as countries such as Britain, the Netherlands and Canada up the purpose and targets of their plastic policies and programs.
“The plastic pollution problem is urgent. Action must be urgent and strategic to reduce the large amount of human-generated plastic in our oceans, rivers and environment.
“A year out from the State Election, now is the time for acknowledging the need for reform on plastic pollution and introducing new laws that reduce pollution, protect marine life and create a healthier future.
“I urge the Premier to immediately put an end to single use plastics and especially plastic bags, straws and bottles,” Mr Field said.
📷: Wildlife Rescue and Care - Australia