- More than 11 tonnes of rubbish, rubble and timber dumped in and near Perth rivers
- 125 large items, such as tyres and chairs, also retrieved
Environment Minister Bill Marmion has urged the public to stop dropping rubbish in and around Perth’s rivers after the Swan River Trust retrieved more than 6.3 tonnes of general refuse and five tonnes of timber and rubble from waterways and foreshores in 2011-12.
New figures released today show trust officers also collected 125 large items, such as chairs and tyres, from the Swan Canning Riverpark during the 12 month period.
Mr Marmion said the behaviour of people who dropped litter and junk in and around the riverpark was inexplicable.
“This is a conversation we need to have as a community to make it clear that littering is not okay,” he said.
“Most disturbing is the mass of plastic bags and fishing line that continues to be found, despite people knowing the terrible impacts these items have on river wildlife from pelicans to dolphins.”
Tyres were the most common large items being dumped, with 48 retrieved in 2011-12. This was similar to the 46 collected the previous year.
There was some improvement with just nine shopping trolleys collected compared to 48 the previous year, and also fewer chairs (21, compared to 51). However, the number of vandalised signs thrown in the river (ranging from real estate to street signs) jumped from 10 to 19 and the number of drums more than doubled from seven to 16.
The 11.3 tonnes of other material included:
- more than 6.3 tonnes of general refuse, such as plastic and foil containers, cans and bottles, food and confectionary wrappings, plastic bags, rags, styrofoam, metal objects, paper and magazines, hats, broken thongs, fishing line and bait bags
- two tonnes of old timber, such as fencing and wood offcuts
- nearly three tonnes of old building rubble removed from a foreshore area.
The release of the river rubbish figures comes just weeks after Keep Australia Beautiful released its national litter index, which indicated that West Australians were among the worst litterers in the country.
“The Liberal-National Government has substantially increased fines for both illegal dumping and littering and now it’s up to the general public to do their bit and stop dumping rubbish where it doesn’t belong,” the Minister said.
- More than half a tonne of general refuse collected each month
- 6.3 tonnes picked up (2011-12); 6.5 tonnes ( 2010-11); 6.7 tonnes (2009-10)
- There was no indication the total volume of litter had declined
Minister's office - 6552 6800 (Australia)