Media Release Plastic Pollution

Federal MPs Have No Excuses for Sucking on Plastic Pollution with Delivery of 150 Reusable Metal Straws

April 17, 2019

Every Federal MP has been sent a reusable metal drinking straw this week from marine conservationists who want policies on plastic pollution that don’t suck.

The Boomerang Alliance and its partner the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) have mailed out some 150 of the reusable straws as a reminder that there are practical solutions to the tsunami of plastic pollution that’s hitting Australia’s oceans.

“Trying to get elected is thirsty work,” said Jeff Angel, director of Boomerang Alliance – a group of 48 environmental NGOs all looking for action on plastic pollution.

“Sending all our MPs a metal straw shows there’s a way for them to suck in a good way. What we want, though, is for them to stop the environment sucking up plastic pollution. We are asking for policies that stop this stream of wasteful plastic from hitting our waterways, polluting our oceans and killing and injuring our marine wildlife.”

AMCS has been sending out the reusable metals straws to its supporters since November 2018,  and by the end of June 2019 some 50,000 people will have received one.

AMCS Marine Campaigner James Cordwell said: “The metal straws are great. They’re designed to be used over and over and over again. The funny thing is that plastic straws are designed to be used only once, yet they’re turning up over and over and over again on our beaches, in our waterways and in our oceans.  Plastic straws really do suck. We want policies on plastic pollution that don’t suck. Our oceans don’t deserve to draw the short straw – or indeed any plastic straws.”

In the coming election, Cordwell said AMCS and Boomerang are asking all parties to commit to an Australia-wide ban on single-use plastics by 2023 and a national target to cut the amount of plastics entering our waterways and oceans by 70 per cent.

Cordwell said pieces of plastic had been found in some of Australia’s most remote wilderness habitats, in the sediments two kilometres below the surface in the Great Australian Bight and “everywhere that scientists have gone looking for plastics.”

He added: “We need to go to the source and cut the production of plastic – so our rivers, oceans and beaches can again be clean and healthy.”

Along with the metal straws, Federal MPs received a door hanger that reminds them to remember their reusable shopping bags, water bottles and coffee cups.

An accompanying letter outlines how Australian political parties need to phase out so-called “single-use” plastics by 2023, introduce a target to cut plastic pollution by 70 per cent; and instigate formal investigations into the risks of plastics contaminating seafood.


Media Contact: AMCS Ingrid Neilson: 0421 972 731