No more straws

Article image - No more straws Mayor, Bob Manning commends Young Woman of the Year, Molly Steer on achieving change with her ‘Straw No More’ campaign

Cairns Regional Council has resolved to lead by example in a mission to protect the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) by removing single-use plastics from Council events and venues.

Mayor, Bob Manning, said, “Cairns is the principal gateway to one of the world’s most iconic natural assets: The Great Barrier Reef.

“In 2018, we continue to see plastics impacting our land and sea environment, including our unique wildlife and corals. As a Reef Guardian Council this deeply concerns us.”

Cairns is believed to be among the first few councils in Australia to make such a commitment.

The move comes on the back of a campaign by 10-year-old Cairns girl Molly Steer, who recently received the 2018 Cairns Young Woman of the Year award.

“Molly has gained great traction with her ‘Straw No More’ campaign,” the mayor said.

“She has brought this very serious issue to our attention through the eyes of a young resident who sees herself as a future custodian of our environment.

“As the present custodians, we owe her the opportunity to grow up with the same pristine natural wonders that we enjoyed as children.”

The Mayor commended both Molly – who addressed Council’s Planning and Environment Committee meeting – and Nicole Nash from The Last Straw on the Great Barrier Reef for the excellent results already achieved via their campaigns.

“The results of their work speak for themselves, with 88 tuck shops and 70 businesses along the GBR catchment removing plastic straws.

“They have both been working with The Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef, creating positive partnerships within our community on a very importance cause.”

Council has begun to take steps to remove plastic straws and other single-use plastics from Council operations and will encourage others to follow suit.