Massive litter reduction at bus stops

26 July 2017 | Environment

A project targeting litter around bus stops has resulted in a 90 per cent reduction in items being dropped near bins at Strathfield Station.

Three bins at bus stops on Everton Road along with four others in the City of Canada Bay were wrapped with bright and clear messaging, as part of a joint project with City of Canterbury Bankstown and Waverley Council targeting transport intersections.

At the start of the project, the sites were pressure cleaned to remove items such as chewing gum, five bins were replaced and Council staff cleaned up all litter in the surrounding area.

“As part of Council’s aim to reduce litter by 50 per cent by 2021, this project revealed that over very short period commuter behaviour changed dramatically,” City of Canada Bay Mayor, Helen McCaffrey said.

“The Council’s Litter Strategy aims to shift the focus to prevention rather than clean-up and increase community pride, and these results are evidence that this approach works.”

The Environmental Protection Agency, which provided a grant for the bus stop project, estimates it costs NSW $180 million each year to clean up litter. As part of the bus stop campaign, the amount of litter was counted at a number of locations. 

“Along with the staggering reduction at Strathfield Station, there was more than an 80 per cent reduction at the bus stops on Great North Road and at the 7 Eleven service station,” Mayor McCaffrey said.

“This project adds to the many initiatives Council is undertaking to reduce litter and promote environmental sustainability, including our decision to support the #Banthebag campaign to stop the use of single-use plastic bags and the push to reduce the amount of throw away take away cups by encouraging residents to choose refill over landfill.”

As part of City of Canada Bay’s environmental strategy, the Council is asking residents to participate in a survey which tracks attitudes and how Council is tracking in achieving favourable outcomes.

To participate in the six question survey, click here.

People should also know that littering can incur a fine.

Single fines for littering:

  • $60 for littering small items, such as bottle tops and cigarette butts
  • $200 for general littering and littering from vehicles
  • $200 for placing advertising material in inappropriate areas where it has the potential to be litter such as under car windscreen wipers
  • $375 for aggravated littering which threatens public safety or the environment, such as intentionally breaking glass.

Larger fines apply for corporations and the maximum penalties for all offences are greater again if proceedings are taken to court.

This litter project is a NSW EPA Waste Less, Recycle More initiative, funded by the waste levy.

Page last updated on: 26/07/17

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