ENTSCH’S PHONEY ‘WAR ON PLASTICS’ DRAWS A BIG BLANK

JOSH WILSON MP.
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8 months ago
ENTSCH’S PHONEY ‘WAR ON PLASTICS’ DRAWS A BIG BLANK
JOSH WILSON MP
Reef Envoy Warren Entsch’s so-called war on plastic pollution has drawn a big blank with no action taken yet on key Coalition election commitments.
 
Scott Morrison announced a series of waste-related commitments leading up to the last election, including a $100 million Australian Recycling Investment Fund and $20 million National Product Stewardship Investment Fund.

But in June this year the Department of Environment revealed that not one cent of the Australian Recycling Investment Fund has been allocated, nor had the guidelines even been set for the National Product Stewardship Investment Fund.

The agency responsible for the Reef has said that marine debris – of which 80 per cent is plastic – is a major threat to the health of the local environment, and Mr Entsch has touted a focus on removing plastics as a key performance indicator in his role as Reef Envoy.

With only 12 per cent of Australia’s plastic waste currently being recycled, Labor’s spokesman for waste and recycling, Josh Wilson MP said it has taken seven years for the Liberals and Nationals to start thinking about Australia’s waste crisis and their promises so far have been nothing but empty packaging.

“The Morrison Government’s talk-big do-little approach means that we are not making progress in reducing harmful plastic waste,” Mr Wilson said.

“Not only does that put added pressure on our oceans, reefs, and waterways in a time of environmental crisis, it also means we’re missing opportunities to grow new resource management and manufacturing jobs,” Mr Wilson said.

Cairns-based Labor Senator Nita Green said once again Warren Entsch and Scott Morrison were more interested in the photo op than the follow up.

“More than 16 months have passed since Mr Entsch declared his war on plastics but he has since failed to demonstrate his role as Reef Envoy is little more than a PR stunt,” Senator Green said.
 
“Instead of using his position to grandstand, Mr Entsch should be working harder to achieve practical outcomes to protect the Great Barrier Reef and making progress on election promises would be a good start.”
Environment