Thursday, July 25, 2024

Byron Shire to phase out single-use packaging

Byron Shire Council has drafted a Single-use Packaging and Materials Policy to phase out single-use waste from its operations and facilities and in the open spaces it manages.

The draft Policy, which is on public exhibition until 28 November, targets a wide range of single-use items such as cups, plates, cutlery, and straws. This includes items deemed as ‘compostable’ or ‘biodegradable’.

It will apply to staff, Councillors and people using or hiring Council halls or spaces which will include events and markets.

The policy also aims to eliminate the use of balloons and decorations such as glitter and confetti at Council facilities and in parks and road reserves.

“Single use items are created without considering what happens to them at the ‘end of life’. They are used for such a short period of time but their impact on the environment lasts for decades,” said Council Manager Resource Recovery, Danielle Hanigan.

“As an organisation working towards zero waste to landfill, we need to lead by example and avoid unnecessary waste streams, and that is what we are aiming to do with this policy.

“Items like disposable cups (especially coffee cups) will be phased out in Council buildings, which includes our offices, pools, and sporting facilities.

“We want people to look at reusable alternatives which will result in less waste going to landfill, less emissions and importantly, less litter being washed into our waterways.

“This is also about behaviour change and showing the community what this change looks like, encouraging them to think about alternatives that are not only better for the environment but are much cheaper in the long run,” she said.

Read the Draft Single-Use Packaging and Materials Policy.

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