As Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk popped in to say a surprise hello to Port Douglas State School students at their sports carnival today, her government was busy acknowledging Global Recycling Day with the launch of a new round of grants that will help local community groups clean up Queensland’s parks and waterways.
This is the latest program in the Palaszczuk Government’s strategic plan for Queensland to become a zero-waste society by reducing how much waste is generated and increasing recycling rates.
The Community Sustainability Action Grants (CSA) Litter and Marine Debris Clean up and Prevention program is offering up to $700,000 in funding to reduce the amount of litter and debris in Queensland’s environment.
Environment Minister Meaghan Scanlon said Queensland is home to some of the most famous and most remote beaches in the world, and the funding provided valuable support to community groups to help reduce the amount of litter that can harm our unique marine life.
“Rubbish and marine debris can cause serious harm or death to sea birds, marine turtles and fish, which can ingest litter or become tangled in discarded nets or fishing equipment,” Minister Scanlon.
“Our extraordinary beaches and tidal rivers are home to these amazing creatures and I’m asking all Queenslanders to think about how to reduce and prevent rubbish from entering those marine zones.
“Community groups across Queensland can make a meaningful contribution to keeping our marine environment clean by creating innovative solutions to reduce marine waste.
“Every piece of rubbish we keep out of the environment makes a difference.”
The launch of the grants expands on the strong action already taken by the Palaszczuk Government to reduce plastic waste and increase recycling capabilities.
New laws passed through Queensland Parliament last week will ban from September 1 this year, single-use plastics such as plastic straws, stirrers, cutlery and plates as well as polystyrene foam food containers and cups.
Lightweight single-use plastic shopping bags have already been banned and the very successful Container Refund Scheme has seen nearly 3 billion containers returned for refunds and more than 700 jobs created across Queensland since 2018.
Applications for the Litter and Marine Debris Clean Up and Prevention grants close at 4pm 12 April 2021.
Eligible not-for-profit organisations, indigenous corporations, tertiary education institutions and Natural Resource Management groups are encouraged to apply for funding.
Grants will be provided for activities in the following categories:
Category 1: Litter and marine debris clean up
Grants of up to $50,000 to remove litter from Queensland’s public spaces such as parks and reserves and/or projects to remove marine debris from Queensland’s beaches and waterways.
Category 2: Community approaches to preventing litter and marine debris
Grants of up to $50,000 for projects to work with Queensland communities to implement place-based solutions to prevent litter and/or marine debris.
Announced in 2016, the Community Sustainability Action Grants program is providing $18 million over six years to eligible community groups and individuals for innovative projects which seek to address climate change, conserve Queensland’s natural and built environment and protect our unique wildlife.
Program guidelines and application details will be available on the Queensland Government’s website shortly.