We’re launching a new Microplastics Research Team to help audit what is found in litter traps and waterways across Melbourne.
We know street litter and microplastic pollution poses a growing threat to our environment and ourselves. In 2020, our Clean Bay Blueprint study showed Melbourne’s microplastic pollution was skyrocketing up to 400% year-to-year – and this data helped influence new laws like single use plastic bans and a container deposit scheme. Meanwhile, a global pandemic changed many aspects of everyday life.
Now it’s time to figure out how these combined factors have changed current pollution levels, and update what we’re asking of decision-makers. We’re teaming up with our friends from Tangaroa Blue Foundation to safeguard and revitalise the health of our waterways through a new study. All levels of government are listening to what our volunteers discover.
Will you join us?
The dates are set and we need your help to tackle microplastics pollution. We are seeking 10 keen volunteers to join our Microplastics Research Team and commit to a minimum of 4 x 6 hour volunteer days across 2023 and 2024. You will help investigate either stormwater drain samples or river samples.
No prior experience necessary, our friendly team leaders will teach you everything you need to know. (And there will be snacks.) Volunteers need to wear enclosed shoes and BYO water bottle. Gloves and other equipment is provided. Bring your own mask if you wish to wear one.
Registration is essential so please let us know you are coming via these links.
19th October – Plastic Free Bay: Drain Sort #1
13th December – Plastic Free Bay: Drain Sort #2
14th December – Plastic Free Bay: Drain Sort #2
About the Plastic Free Bay Project (2023-2025)
While data from community-led beach clean-ups provides important information on types and quantities of human-made pollutants reaching Port Phillip Bay, microplastics and their inland sources are underreported.
The EcoCentre’s Clean Bay Blueprint study (2017-2020) detected alarming increases in microplastics flowing to the Bay. Now councils, industry partners and citizen-science community groups will collaborate to detect and prevent plastic pollutants from entering Port Phillip Bay. Microplastic samples from drain filters, rivers and coastlines will be collected, analysed and compared to prior datasets in order to understand what has changed and to update targeted plans to stop major pollutants at their sources.
Thanks to the Victorian Government and local Councils for funding this project, and to our collaborators at Pipe Management Australia and the Tangaroa Blue Foundation.