Exchange program reduces plastic bag use

Hobsons Bay City Council is encouraging residents to reduce the number of plastic bags used in the City through a plastic bag exchange program. The program runs for one week every two months. Residents bring ten plastic bags to the Hobsons Bay Civic Centre or one of the City’s library branches and exchange them for one reusable calico bag.

Plastic bags collected by the program are then recycled and used to manufacture products such as pipes, bins, bottles, automotive parts, and other recyclable products.

Hobsons Bay Mayor, Councillor Leigh Hardinge, said the program is providing a simple way for residents to reduce their environmental footprint.

“It is an unfortunate fact that plastic bags are still widely used in our society, even though the detrimental effect they have on the environment is well publicised,” he said. “In Hobsons Bay’s fragile marine environment, it is especially important that our community tries to avoid using plastic bags so they don’t end up in our waterways and parklands.

“The plastic bag exchange program is a simple yet effective way for residents to help the environment. Currently only three per cent of plastic bags in Victoria
are recycled. If every Hobsons Bay resident said no to one plastic bag each week, we could save four million bags each year.”

Since the first exchange in May 2006, Hobsons Bay City Council has collected some 33,000 plastic bags. Council initially purchased 5,000 calico bags for the exchange program. Once all stock has been used, Council will monitor the program to determine whether additional bags will be purchased and more exchanges held.

For further information contact Hobsons Bay City Council on (03) 9932 1000.