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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 511 asked in the Legislative Council on 21 May 2020 by Hon Alison Xamon

Minister responding: Hon S.N. Dawson
Parliament: 40 Session: 1

Answered on 21 May 2020

ROADSIDE LITTERING

511. Hon ALISON XAMON to the Minister for Environment:

I ask this question on behalf of Hon Diane Evers, who is on urgent parliamentary business.

I refer to the minister's response to my question without notice 226 on 17 March 2020.

(1) Of the 871.78 volunteer hours registered for 2019–20 to March, how many were in the south west region and how many volunteers did it relate to?

(2) What is the government doing to encourage volunteers in this type of work and how is it valuing the work being done by these volunteers?

(3) How many FTE positions are directly funded for roadside litter pick-up in the south west?

(a) If none, will the minister consider funding positions; and

(b) if no to 3(a), why not?

(4) Given the significant amount of roadside litter, has the government considered stronger regulations around packaging requirements, including reducing single-use plastics and increasing biodegradable and recyclable materials?

(a) If not, why not?

Hon STEPHEN DAWSON replied:

I thank Hon Diane Evers for some notice of the question.

(1) There were 109.8 volunteer hours for 62 volunteers.

(2) The McGowan government supports the great work done by these volunteers across Western Australia. Keep Australia Beautiful Council volunteers support a number of programs including Adopt-a-Spot. The program offers all the necessary litter collection equipment and insurance for participants. Volunteers receive an adoption certificate and recognition on the KABC website. Many volunteers are also recognised at KABC's Tidy Towns Sustainable Communities Awards.

(3) The work of roadside litter collection and emptying of bins in the South West Region is undertaken by Main Roads contractors.

(4) Actions taken by the government, such as banning the supply of lightweight plastic bags in 2018 and the introduction of a container deposit scheme, will continue to significantly reduce littering. The government has also consulted with the community through the ''Let's Not Draw the Short Straw: Reduce Single-Use Plastics'' issues paper, which received almost 9 500 responses. Options for further actions and the next steps are being considered by the government.

(a) Not applicable.