A social newsletter for and about the southern-most region of Australia known as the Great Australian Bight.
EDITION: February 18, 2021
Table of Contents
Enough is Enough …
Concerned with the appearance of the Ceduna township, some local residents took to the streets to collect and dispose of the excess litter that has accumulated in multiple town areas.
Jo Hillas of 4evafit Gym became frustrated with the amount of litter she found around the town. Jo often picks up litter along her regular walks. In January, she finally had enough of the problem and put a call out to the community to come together in an organised manner to pick up litter.
Other local residents who were equally frustrated with the appearance of the township answered the call and took to the streets on Friday, February 5 to collect the excess litter in various locations throughout Ceduna.
Participants of all ages met at the gym where Jo distributed rubbish collection bags and gloves and provided suggestions of areas within the town to focus on. The group dispersed themselves throughout these areas and spent an hour or two filling their bags and clearing the litter.
Another evening has been set for Friday, March 12 to repeat the process at some further areas in need of attention and those not addressed at the initial event. It is hoped that the response of the community is just as strong for this coming event.
… is Enough!
Concern has also peaked recently in regard to the littering and treatment of our local beaches and natural areas. COVID has caused an influx of visitors to these areas, most with little or no infrastructure to accommodate the numbers.
Michael and Hayley Nicholls have set about presenting their concerns on this matter in a letter written to the South Australian Tourism Commission. They highlighted issues such as the amount of waste being left in sandhills, on beaches, and in other natural areas, including litter, excrement, and toilet paper with no options available to mitigate the problem.
Mr. and Mrs. Nicholls also expressed their concern about the amount of traffic our natural areas are receiving as a result of recent tourism promotions of the areas. Especially, considering the lack of thought to the capability of these areas to withstand the numbers and the lack of infrastructure available in these remote beaches and nature areas.
We (Prestige PR / Ceduna Online) have also conducted a small litter campaign previously and identified some issues which were raised with some local businesses over some time. One business taking many attempts and several months to finally install the bins that are now in place in a truck parking bay but unfortunately, this was just the obvious first step and further measures are required. An area manager had assured us that a weekly litter pick up would be occurring in that area but that doesn’t seem to be the case and that area manager is no longer employed in that position. We are again emailing the head office of this entity with calls for change.
Our effort consisted of litter picking Denial Bay, Denial Bay road from the town turn off to where the road meets the highway at the Western approach into Ceduna. Continuing along the road into Ceduna, turning along the bypass road and out of town along the Eastern entrance to Ceduna, finishing at a parking bay just beyond the turn-off to Smoky Bay. This effort took a fortnight.
Along the way some issues identified were:
- Wheelie bins (roadside and streetside) with inadequate lids, or none, dispersed litter far and wide during gusts of wind.
- Over-filled bins in the same situation as above behaved the same way.
- It became apparent that for some it was a daily ritual to partake in certain fast foods or alcoholic drinks and toss them out the window before getting home, as often these same packages and branded UDL cans were found within the same stretch of area. Suggesting deliberate littering by local residents, the most disappointing of all!
- Although it was intended that we finish at the turnoff to Smoky Bay the parking bay beyond that point could not be left as it was clearly a place for visitors to stop and disregard items before entering the town. This and the information bay near the airport were also used as a toilet stop by travelers not wanting to get caught short in town it seems. Nappy changes, or at least the tossing out of a previous nappy change, were also popular at these last-stop-before-town areas. Is this convenience or are travellers not wanting to, or scared to, stop in Ceduna or use our facilities? We uncovered many required changes, but also just as many questions.
Not an exhaustive list but it does paint a picture. To ensure you and your business is not contributing to the litter issue these points may be worth some consideration.
Our reason for doing this litter picking a few years ago was the fact that any of our effort to promote our area is very difficult when our streets, roads and town entrances are lined with litter. It welcomes so many issues and it’s no small matter! If you approach a town and all you see on the way in is trash, if you can bypass you probably will. Not only did we have this issue but at no point from entrance, travelling along the bypass to exit was there anything to change the traveller’s mind – as it was badly littered all the way. I must say though, immediately after this the golf club fence line was cleared and things have not been allowed to return to that extent since – which is great.
It’s wonderful that we have convenience businesses at either end of town but this also means that if the litter isn’t managed correctly our town entrances paint a sad picture of our town and our area and that’s my main reason for mentioning all the above here.
The awesome efforts of the community-minded locals, above, are very important in highlighting this issue and the need for it to be addressed and taken seriously. The likelihood that others will respect our town, our beaches and the areas, in general, is very low if we allow the impression that we simply don’t care. Nothing says this like trash lying around. A visitor arrives at a beach strewn with litter, some will pick it up, but most will follow suit, same goes for our town. And in the age of social media every visitor is an advertisement. Impressions and images matter!
It takes a community of individuals, families, groups and entities to work together on this issue to see lasting change through effort, education and repercussions for wrongdoing. Let’s hope the efforts of our wonderful community members above are the start of positive and continual change in this matter.
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Save the date
The second community litter collection evening will be held on Friday, March 12
Go to Ceduna Soapbox
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