With 50 per cent of consumer plastics designed to be used only once, Central Coast Council are hoping to inspire and motivate residents to makes changes to create sustainable practices at their free World Environment Day events.
To be held Tuesday 5 June, events will centre around this year’s theme Beat Plastic Pollution, providing the community tangible ways they can make lifestyle choices to reduce single use plastic.
Mayor Jane Smith said with global plastic production projected to almost double in the next 10 to 15 years, consumers need to make long-term behaviour changes to become part of the solution.
“Our obsession with plastic convenience has become a dire issue, with one million plastic bottles bought every minute across the globe,” Mayor Smith said.
“It is time we exercise our buying power as consumers by refusing single-use plastics, demanding sustainable products and embracing sensible purchase habits.
“From turning down plastic straws and cutlery, sitting at your local café rather than using takeaway and picking up litter along our beautiful beaches and coastlines, there is so much that can be done at an individual level to drive change.
“If these changes are a little overwhelming and you are not sure where to start, I implore you to come along to the free World Environment Day events to equip yourself with knowledge to make easy lifestyle changes that make a huge impact.
“At Laycock Street Theatre there will be market stalls with alternatives to single use plastic and bulk food purchase options to help you make the switch.
“Stalls will include modern reusable nappies, net bags as well as reusable straws, cups and bottles as well as locally made biodegradable beeswax wraps - better still you can learn how to make your own beeswax wraps, or boomerang bags, at the free workshops.
“Making these changes can be hard at first – to help keep you accountable I would challenge attendees to also sign up for Plastic Free July. All those who register will receive a free eco-silk shopping bag.”
Laycock Street Theatre afternoon events will run from 4.30-6.30pm. No bookings are required for the beeswax wrap or boomerang bag workshops though as spaces are limited attendees are encouraged to arrive and register early to avoid disappointment.
The Ocean Action Pod, a hands on interactive display trailer suitable for all ages, will also be on site, illustrating the scale, consequences of and solutions to marine plastic pollution.
Educators will be on hand to answer questions and encourage investigation and will also be in Kibble Park from 10.30am-2.30pm.
Following the afternoon session will be a free screening of the awe-inspiring film BLUE, which highlights the devastation single use plastics have caused our oceans and action we can take to be part of the solution.
“This incredible film explains the negative impact our plastic use is having on our oceans and the potential human health risks it imposes,” Mayor Smith said.
“Nearly one third of the plastics we use end up in our ecosystems and once there they last over 100 years getting smaller and smaller until they find their way into the seafood found on dinner plates.
“It is having a catastrophic impact on aquatic life with 100,000 marine animals killed by plastics each year and due to plastics durability it means the same piece of pollution can kill multiple times.
“Only one per cent of plastics in the oceans can be seen on the surface, possibly why many do not realise the issue is incredibly urgent.
“National Geographic have illustrated this perfectly on their latest cover leaving us all to contemplate – our planet or plastic?”
Following the film will be question and answer with Take 3 co-founder Tim Silverwood. No bookings necessary.
Visit centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/events for further details.