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10th March 2021

I rise to speak in support of the Waste Reduction and Recycling (Plastic Items) Amendment Bill 2020. I note the inclusion of expanded polystyrene in the definition of banned single-use plastic items and I am grateful for it. This legislation aims to remove single-use plastics from our daily lives and thus assist in the preservation of wildlife and waterways and reduce litter on our roads and in parks or ending up in landfill.

I am pleased to announce that the idea of reducing, recycling and repurposing has been embraced in my electorate of Nicklin. Many businesses have adapted practices that act in support of the aims of this important legislation. Waste management is not only necessary for the protection of our environment; it also supports local jobs as we transition to a sustainable economy. Removing single-use plastics is responsible governance which has community support.

My region is extremely proud of its environment and heritage. Groups and individuals all do their bit in this space. Businesses, in particular our small businesses, have adapted and contribute greatly to the aims of this bill. We take the war on waste seriously in the hinterland. Envirotech waste management and Ecosafe Wastewater Treatment in Nambour, Sutton’s in Cooroy, Drop’n’Go and Pete’s Village Bakery are container exchange points in Yandina. Urban Depot in Nambour offers a drive-in swap service and does a pop-up run to Kenilworth on Tuesdays. I did note one of the members opposite wanting some sort of scheme like that for some of his more remote areas. I thank Jason Irwin at Urban Depot for extending his service and his employment of our local young people. Also in Nambour, Cartridge World and the Timber Recycling Shed offer recycling services. Auto parts are recycled in Yandina, and Pac Food in Nambour is committed to creating environmentally friendly food packaging products.

We have a unique business in my now home of Palmwoods called Salads at Palmwoods, one of the few lettuce and herb farms that sell their produce in compostable bags. Marnee and Nick are examples of the community and business adapting to change and securing our future. I cannot forget the exceptional community participation in Clean Up Australia Day last Sunday. I would also like to thank personally our community champion for this month, Mr Norm Morwood, for his ongoing work in removing waste from our beautiful region.

It has been great to hear of the bipartisan support for this bill, but I would like to note in this chamber the absence of a party that is so called ‘for the environment’.

Mr Mickelberg interjected

Mr SKELTON: I take that interjection. It is great to see the bipartisan support in this chamber for this bill and for our environment, but I would like to remind the members opposite of their deplorable record on environmental policy. In the spirit of International Women’s Day I quote Ms Emmeline Pankhurst: ‘It’s about deeds, not words.’ I am proud to be part of a government that actually gets things done.

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