Clean up to target marine debris

Burdekin residents are being called on to join a coastal campaign to clean up the Great Barrier Reef lagoon later this month.

The Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up is targeting marine debris along Alva Beach on Saturday, October 24, from 8.30am-1pm.

Burdekin Shire Council Mayor Bill Lowis said the event was aimed at clearing debris which was harmful to marine life, posed a navigational hazard and smothered coral.

“Unfortunately there are those in our community and that use our waterways that don’t take their rubbish home and it makes its way into the sea and on to our beaches,” he said.

“Some of it is washed up and some is just left there by irresponsible beach users, but all of it is a threat to our wildlife.

“Marine debris, such as nets, is hazardous to turtles and dugongs and small pieces of plastic and plastic bags can be mistaken as food by marine life and cause death.

“The Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up is one way we can help the environment and wildlife and I would urge residents to take the time to come down to Alva and help out.”

The Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up is delivered by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority with funding through Reef Trust, and in partnership with the Australian Marine Debris Initiative – Tangaroa Blue Foundation, Eco Barge and Burdekin Shire Council – a Reef Guardian Council.

Volunteers are asked to meet at the Burdekin Surf Lifesaving Club at Alva at 8.30am. There will be a free BBQ and cold drinks available to volunteers after the event.

Make sure to bring sunscreen, hat and water bottle and Council will provide you with gloves and collection bags. Volunteers with utilities or four-wheel drives would be welcome to help collect larger items and collection bags from along the beach.

The data collected from the clean-ups held along the Queensland coast will be analysed and entered into the Australian Marine Debris database to help create a comprehensive overview of the quantity and types of marine debris found along the Australian coastline.

It also enables hot spots to be identified along the Great Barrier Reef as well as type and origin of the rubbish collected to help create source reduction plans with the local community and government.


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