In just under $20,000, the city of Kwinana has managed to successfully reduce plastic pollution and that fee is far less than what would have costed the authorities to manually remove waste from the reserve.
At a time when the world is reeling from climate change, it is the need of the hour to keep plastic pollution and floating trash away from our water resources. It is not only dangerous for human beings who are prone to all kinds of water-borne diseases, but also for animals who could choke on the waste we throw around.
But here's a city in Australia that is completely changing the narrative around reducing plastic pollution. The city of Kwinana has proven that sometimes it is the simplest and easiest solutions that turn out to be the most effective. Kwinana tried out two new drainage nets in the Henley Reserve that are attached to concrete drain pipes. As easy as it sounds -- the drainage nets or “trash traps” were placed to reduce the discharge of waste from the drainage systems. As reported by the World Economic Forum.
The nets have been designed in order to prevent pollutants and solid waste, carried by water from the local road network, from flowing into the nature reserves. The two drainage pipes were placed at a location between residential and natural areas. If you are wondering how much waste this method has managed to collect -- it is about 370 kg (about 816 lb) of waste, including plastic food wrappers and bottles.
"The nets are placed on the outlet of two drainage pipes, which are located between residential areas and natural areas. This allows the nets to capture the gross pollutants carried by stormwater from the local road network before those pollutants are discharged and contaminate the natural environment at the downstream end of the outlet area," Mayor Adams explained in a statement shared in the blog post. "This ensures that the habitat of the local wildlife is protected and minimizes the risk of wildlife being caught in the nets. To date, no wildlife has been caught up in either of the City's nets."
In just under $20,000, the city of Kwinana has managed to successfully reduce plastic pollution and that fee is far less than what would have costed the authorities to manually remove waste from the reserve. According to Kwinana's blog post, all of the work and finances invested are "expected to realize considerable cost savings in labour intensive work previously required to collect the rubbish scattered around the reserve by hand."
It's great to see @CityofKwinana trialling the use of rubbish drainage collection nets, our Council has been using these nets for 10 years.— Nelson City Council (@nelsoncitynz) August 14, 2018
The photo of the empty net is from Nelson, the other is from Kwinana. It is all part of reducing waste. pic.twitter.com/M7fpXgrsIJ
Following the successful installation of the drainage nets, there are three more locations that are looking to take up the project; however, nothing has been confirmed as of now. Meanwhile, Kwinana is also planning to install two additional drainage nets this year within the city. The city officials confirmed that the drainage nets method is indeed the most efficient and cost-effective way of keeping the water trash-free.
Considering the fact that if 815lbs of trash was collected in only four months, then imagine how much waste can be collected in a year or two? This is indeed an exceptional way to reduce plastic pollution and we hope that more and more cities can adopt this method in order to resourcefully manage waste.