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Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

4 December 2006

National litter count gets underway


Australia’s litter problem will be assessed and counted when the second Keep Australia Beautiful national litter index gets underway around the country this week.

Funded under the Australian Government’s Natural Heritage Trust, the litter count includes all states and territories which are assessed by type and location.

For the first time, all states and territories, except NNSW and ACT, have also contributed funds towards the research.

The Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, said auditors would cover every state and territory, visiting 975 sites across Australia.

“Last year’s results have already proved strong ammunition in the battle against litter - particularly cigarette butts,” Senator Campbell said.

“The Australian Government is committed to finding practical ways to keep our environment, streets and neighbourhoods clean and beautiful.

“The results give governments, communities and industry valuable information about the litter problem, allowing us to measure success rates and come up with new ways to reduce litter.”

Senator Campbell said product brand names would also be included in this year’s audit.

National Chairman of Keep Australia Beautiful, Don Chambers, said a recent meeting with the authors of a UK study of litter by brand name highlighted the benefits of this approach in Australia.

The Chief Executive Officer of the National Packaging Covenant, Ed Cordner, said an understanding of which brands were in the litter stream would help industry to meet its responsibilities under the National Packaging Covenant.

Included in the audit is a neighbourhood litter count, which provides a do-it-yourself version for local counts that can be downloaded from www.kab.org.au.

“The count has become a project in itself, with enquiries from as far as the Main Street programme, which is the American version of Tidy Towns,” Senator Campbell said.

Details of the National Litter Index, including the measure of branded litter are available at www.kab.org.au.

Media Contact: Rob Broadfield 02 6277 7640 or 0409 493 902
Keep Australia Beautiful: Scott Lyall 0419 016 401

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