Greater Geelong Council takes lead against plastic waste

Wednesday, 29 April 2020

Council has reaffirmed its strong commitment to reduce plastic waste generated within our offices and events by adopting the Plastic Wise Program Action Plan 2020-2021.

The program aims to minimise impacts on the environment with a series of planned actions, such as:

  • replacing disposable single use plastic items such as cups with non-disposable items at City Hall
  • briefing catering and event equipment suppliers of the City’s expectations to phase out single use plastics
  • implementing a staff awareness and education program
  • finding opportunities to tighten cleaning requirements to ensure waste is sorted correctly
  • improving waste management in council buildings and identifying opportunities for more sustainable purchasing and
  • participating in events such as Clean-Up Australia Day that reduce the impacts of single use plastic on the environment.

Some of the plan’s actions are already underway, such as updating events application forms and guides with wording encouraging recycling, the reduction of single-use plastic and non-recyclables and other waste minimisation actions.

The community, external stakeholders and our staff were consulted as part of the development of Council’s Draft Waste and Resource Recovery Strategy 2020-2030, which was also adopted last night. There’s been strong community feedback that council should take a leadership role in reducing and preventing the use of single use plastic.

We will continue to work with community groups to reduce plastic and has provided funding for projects such as:

  • minimising single use plastics in Ocean Grove (in partnership with Repair café)
  • War on Waste: Green Cafes project (in partnership with Geelong Sustainability) and
  • War on Waste: community education (in partnership with Geelong Sustainability). 

The program action plan was developed following a Notice of Motion from Councillor Sarah Mansfield in 2018.

Councillor Stephanie Asher - Mayor

It’s council’s role to show leadership in reducing the use and purchase of plastic, particularly single use plastic items. I thank Cr Mansfield for championing this program and I’m proud the council group has adopted this action plan. We enthusiastically support all initiatives that help the environment and reduce the City’s footprint.

Councillor Sarah Mansfield

Single use plastics are a major contributor to environmental damage, particularly to our stunning coastline and wildlife biodiversity. This strategy is an important piece of work and will help make a difference in the region, but more needs to be done.

The plan also allows for the City to work in partnership with events and community groups on reducing our use of plastics.

Page last updated: Thursday, 28 May 2020