In what could be a world first, a coalition of community groups and government agencies dedicated to eliminating litter on Port Phillip beaches was formed yesterday. The coalition is planning immediate action to comprehensively clean up all beaches in the City of Port Phillip on Clean Up Australia Day (March 6).
At a forum convened by Port Phillip EcoCentre, Heidi Taylor of Tangaroa Blue Ocean Care spoke of the need for active local partnerships to tackle the ever growing problem of plastic trash in waterways and oceans. Representatives of the 16 organisations present endorsed this concept and set about planning united clean up action. A key feature is that all litter collected will be recorded in order to identify the worst offenders.
Baykeeper was mighty pleased to convene and facilitate the forum which created the Port Phillip Clean Beaches Coalition. Groups represented included Earthcare, 2 Hands, 3184 Beach Patrol, 3206 Beach Patrol, 3207 Beach Patrol, Friends of Webb Dock Walking Trail, Coast Monkeys, Sea Shepherd Melbourne, Surfrider Foundation Melbourne, City of Port Phillip, Healthy Waterways Program (Melbourne Water), Metropolitan Waste Management Group, Coast Action Coastcare, EPA Victoria, Port Phillip EcoCentre and Tangaroa Blue. Thanks go to Royal Melbourne Yacht Squadron for providing the meeting venue.
We hope our united action on Clean Up Australia Day will demonstrate the benefits of working together rather than in isolation. I’d be pleased to talk to others around the Bay who want to form a similar coalition in their area. Volunteers for the clean up day are encouraged to register at www.cleanupaustraliaday.org.au/