School of fish

By 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish

Coffee cup

10 million plastic straws and 2.7 million takeaway coffee cups are discarded in Australia every day.

Drink bottle

Drink containers = 35 per cent of ALL litter in WA. 480 billion plastic bottles were produced globally in 2016. Less than half were recycled, and only 7% were reused as drinking bottles.

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The Own Your Impact guide to

Cutting waste when out & about

It all add's up stamp

Our personal waste footprint doesn't just relate to what we throw out at home. The choices we make when we are out and about play a huge role too.

Coffee Cups

BYO reusable cup or consider the need for a lid or stirrer

Straws

Say no to a straw or BYO 

Plastic Bottles

Make the smarter choice of carrying your own bottle

Food packaging 

Choose items with less packaging and use fewer disposables 

Plastic Bags

Change habits and say no to plastic bags

These items are common offenders: 

straws Do you really need that plastic straw in your drink? For most people the answer is a resounding no, yet we take them anyway.

What’s the problem?

Every plastic straw you’ve ever used is most likely sitting in landfill somewhere or harming marine life in our oceans - like all plastic they hundreds of years to breakdown.

What can you do?

Own your impact – just say no, use ‘pester power’ and ask whether it’s made from biodegradable materials, or BYO straw and opt for an alternative such as one made from stainless steel or glass to lessen your waste generation.

Cup Western Australians love their coffee... but this affair is creating big environmental consequences for future generations. 

What’s the problem?

It’s the mix of cardboard and plastic waterproof lining in the cups which make them so difficult to recycle.

Around 50,000 single-use coffee cups (and lids) are thrown away every minute - most go straight into landfill.

What can you do?

The simplest thing you can do is stop using disposable cups.

Find a reusable cup that reflects your personal style or take an extra five minutes to savour your caffeine hit in the café instead.   

If you’re in a situation where you must accept a single use cup, ask if they're biodegradable and say "no thanks" to the lid and plastic stirrer.  

plastic bottle We throw out a huge number of plastic bottles – and the number is set to grow by a further 20% in the next three years… unless we all act.

Why is it a problem?

Plastic bottles and their lids are a big contributor to litter, and it’s this litter which is causing damage to our wildlife, marine life and polluting our waterways and coastlines.

What can you do?

Avoidance is the best thing you can do.  

Get into the habit of carrying a reusable drink bottle and make use of the growing number of water refill stations popping up. This approach won't just help to lighten your waste footprint, it'll also save you money.

Choosing drinks in cans, or even glass bottles, is a smarter choice as these components are more readily recovered, recycled and reused. And, make sure if you do buy something on-the-go that you dispose of it the right way - ideally in a recycling bin!

chip packet With volunteers collecting more than 1,100 ute loads of litter, including a high percentage of food packaging, across WA in a single day, it’s clear there’s still plenty of room for improvement in this area.

Why is it a problem?

Litter isn’t just a bad look, it’s also bad news for our wildlife and marine life, and our health.  

What can you do?

Take responsibility for your own waste. It sounds simple because it is – either bin it or take it home. Also remember that by choosing food items with less packaging you’ll generate less waste in general.

plastic bag Prior to the lightweight plastic bag ban around five million plastic bags were littered in Western Australia each year.

What is the problem?

A 2015 study found that 60% of seabirds had plastic in their guts, with that figure expected to rise to 95% by 2050. Given Western Australia’s extensive coastline, steps need to be taken to protect our oceans from pollution.

What can you do?

With fewer shops offering plastic bags free-of-charge and more people adopting a BYO approach, there’s potential to disrupt how plastic bags are used in the future. Be a part of the BYO campaign - take your own bags to all shops, not just the supermarket, and be on the right side of change!

Ready to cut your waste in the community?

Remember, it all adds up so rather than contribute to WA’s waste problem take small steps to lighten your waste footprint piece by piece.