Georges Riverkeeper's partnership with NSW Department of Justice - Corrective Services helps to remove litter that slips through the collection stream and into the environment.
Work has been put on hold since mid-March, however, with COVID-19 restrictions beginning to ease, the partnership is set to resume soon, with an increase in the total area covered by the program.
Recently, Robert Dixon from Georges Riverkeeper has been undertaking site visits with field officers and other staff from NSW Department of Justice - Corrective Services, and collating findings to have litter collection sites re-approved for the 2020-2021 financial year. The process involves assessing the sites for Work Health and Safety (WHS) hazards, insuring access is still possible and updating maps as necessary. There are a total of 229 sites throughout the catchment, including 29 new sites, subject to approvals by member Councils.
Despite the extensive network of rubbish bins provided by member Councils, some people still don’t do the right thing and dispose waste into the environment. Littering may have also increased recently with an increase in the number of businesses providing take-away packaging for their products, as well as an increase in the number of people using face masks and plastic gloves.
Luckily, when work resumes, more resources will be available than before the pandemic due to a backlog of offenders needing to complete community service hours. This, combined with an increase in sites and area covered should mean further reductions in litter entering the river.