2023 World Cleanup Day: A Global Movement Towards a Cleaner Future test
As our planet suffers from the repercussions of environmental degradation and plastic pollution, the importance of World Cleanup Day is more paramount than ever before. On the third Saturday of September, the world comes together to unite against litter while promoting waste reduction and working towards a more sustainable future. For Australians, the day to get cleaning falls on the 16th of September. The great news is it doesn’t take much to get involved! In this article, we’ll shed light on how individuals can participate in this critical day while also shedding light on the role compostable plastic can play to help prevent waste.
Why Does World Cleanup Day Matter?
World Cleanup Day isn't just about tidying up garbage and litter from streets, parks, and beaches. It's a symbol of a global movement towards a greener future. As an international community, we can actively reduce the amount of waste we produce while ensuring the waste we create is disposed of correctly. This day is a great way to start meaningful conversations with friends, family, and future generations about waste reduction and things we can all do in our everyday lives to abolish the waste problem choking the planet. The day serves as a reminder that our actions, no matter how small, can contribute to meaningful change; we all have the power to make a difference. Beyond immediate visual impact, World Cleanup Day fosters awareness, educates communities, and inspires long-term commitment to maintaining clean environments.
How You Can Make a Difference
Participating in World Cleanup Day is rewarding and easily accessible to all community sectors. Getting involved is easy;
- Join a World Cleanup Event: Many local communities organise cleanup events on World Cleanup Day, including rubbish and beach collections. Look for announcements from environmental organisations, community groups, or even your workplace. Encouraging children to get involved in cleaning up their local community is a beautiful way to explore the importance of looking after our environment.
- Organise A Cleanup: Can't find a World Cleanup event near you? Take the initiative and organise a cleanup with friends, family, or neighbours for your local community. Post your cleanup event on social media and take the stance to clean up your local parks, beaches, and streets. You can also register your cleanup event and add to the counted results. World Cleanup Day can also provide access to a fantastic toolbox to get you started!
- Spread the Word: Even if you can't physically participate, use your voice on social media to raise awareness about World Cleanup Day and its importance. Encourage others to join the cause and spread the news about this wonderful worldwide event.
- Collect Rubbish Daily: Understandably, we all lead hectic lives. If Saturday 16th of September is already booked, why not take a bag and some gloves with you on the way to work or while out for a stroll and collect rubbish along the way? You’ll be surprised how much waste you can find on your daily walk and how others will be inspired to do the same.
- Create An Environment Plan: Whether it’s at work or in your home, create an environmental plan. Consider what things you can do in your everyday lives to help our planet. Consider composting kitchen waste in the home or office, get savvy with your recycling, reuse, and reduce the amount of daily waste.
Looking Beyond Cleanup: Embracing Waste Reduction
While cleaning up existing litter is essential, it's equally crucial to address the root cause of the issue regarding our waste. As humans, we create excessive rubbish. According to the Australian Government's statistics on waste in 2020/2021, Australia generated an estimated 75.8 million mega tonnes of waste, equivalent to around 2.95 tonnes per person! More concerning is the notion that we are creating more waste, but our recycling rate is not increasing.
The mantra "reduce, reuse, recycle" rings true here. By opting for reusable items, reducing single-use plastics, and making conscious consumer choices, we can significantly decrease the volume of waste entering our ecosystems.
The National Waste Report is published biennially. This report offers an overview of Australia's waste production and handling strategies, encompassing both waste generators and recycling rates. The latest news surfaced in the waning days of 2022, delivering fresh insights into how the increased population affects the amount of waste we generate while also highlighting Australia's resource recovery rate. Recycling, waste reuse, and energy recovery stood at 63%. However, the recycling rate retained its present circumstance at 60% - showing no improvement compared to the previous report.
Compostable Plastics: A Sustainable Solution
Compostable plastics offer a promising alternative to traditional plastics. Derived from renewable sources like corn starch, these plastics break down naturally in a composting environment and return to the environment without causing harm or leaving any toxic residues. They can play a crucial role in reducing the burden of plastic waste. Still, pressure is needed to ensure our communities have access to these products and the collection, sorting, and composting infrastructure to support their everyday use. However, it's important to remember that proper disposal is paramount. Compostable plastics require specific conditions to break down efficiently. Disposing of them in regular plastic recycling bins can upset the recycling process of other plastics. Contact your local council for advice on a composting site near you, or consider starting your home composting – great for the garden and now for your plastic waste. Always check the products you choose to use are certified for home composting.
The Power of Global Action
World Cleanup Day is a powerful reminder that the world’s population can positively change when we unite for a common cause. Waste is a problem internationally; there is not a single corner of the world that is not affected by the incredible amount of waste humans continue to generate. By participating in cleanup efforts, reducing waste, and embracing compostable alternatives, we contribute to a cleaner, healthier, and more sustainable future and world. Every piece of rubbish collected, every plastic bottle avoided, and every compostable item disposed of correctly brings the world closer to a cleaner future.