According to a recent study, Australia has diminished the plastic waste on its beaches by 30%. That means that plastic litter has decreased a third during the past 10 years since the last Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) study was conducted. The scientists believe three main factors to be responsible for the reduction.
The thing that mattered the most according to the scientists was government plans to make waste reduction more economically attainable. For example those plans included curbside pickup waste and recycling collection together with a ban on plastic bags.
Another reason could be the improved surveillance against illegal waste dumping. Those responsible for illegal waste dumping are found and penalized. Also, local authorities organized more frequent plastic cleanups which has played a big part in the results.
Lastly, local governments that had updated their waste management policies and not reduced their coastal waste management budget saw much better results than those who hadn’t.
“Whilst plastic pollution is still a global crisis and we still have a long way to go, this research shows that decisions made on the ground, at local management levels, are crucial for the successful reduction of coastal plastic pollution,” said study lead Dr. Kathryn Willis.
The latest study was part of CSIRO’s bugger Ending Plastic Waste Mission which wants to achieve an 80% reduction in plastic waste that ends up in Australian nature by 2030.