There will be “no plastic bottles hanging on the wall” in Cairns and Port Douglas thanks to a new map of local water refill locations.
Launched just in time for summer, the Water Map shows the location of water refill stations for BYO bottles in Cairns and Douglas Shire. The map is an initiative of Plastic Free Cairns and Douglas program run by the Boomerang Alliance, Australia’s peak not-for-profit waste organisation. Refill stations on the map include Council refill points and participating local businesses. Although Queensland has recently banned some single-use plastic items, including plates, bowls, cups and straws, plastic bottles are unfortunately still allowed.
Helen Riley, Co-ordinatior of Plastic Free Cairns and Port Douglas highlights the impact that plastic bottles have on the environment:
It’s one of the most problematic items of single-use plastic. They are littered often, and even when recycled, they can only be recycled a few times before the plastic is too degraded, and the plastic lids and neckrings just don’t get recycled.
With the Great Barrier Reef just a stone’s throw away, stopping the use of single-use plastic bottles is especially important. Many businesses have already pledged to eliminate single use plastics by joining Plastic Free Cairns and Douglas, who work with them to find reusable and compostable alternatives. The program is calling out for more local businesses to sign up to help save the reef by joining the water network.
So next time you’re out exploring, don’t forget your refillable bottle and view the water bottle refill network map so that you can stay hydrated this summer.