Gladstone residents generate 2kg of waste a day
GLADSTONE residents are generating almost two kilograms of waste every day - and it's ending up in our nature reserves and burdening the loads of local charities.
The council is cracking down on illegal dumping and illegal littering across the region, claiming the funds used to clean up other people's mess is a huge waste of resources and ratepayer's money.
As recently as one month ago, a man was fined almost $2000 for dumping 250 litres of household waste at a reserve on Tablelands Rd near Miriam Vale.
Other organisations such as the Friends of Bindaree Garage Sale are also being weighed down by the insurmountable amount of rubbish in Gladstone, and the opportunistic methods people are using to dispose of it.
Since the closure of the local Endeavour Foundation op-shop almost one month ago, charity bins in Boyne Island have overflowed.
Volunteers from the Friends of Bindaree garage sale are never certain of what they will encounter when sorting donations from waste.
Unfortunately, president Andrew Bannerman says the amount of waste often eclipses saleable items.
"There's been a lot of rubbish, a lot of dirty clothes that haven't even been washed and broken items that will never be used," he said.
"We've been overwhelmed since Christmas. Council helps us out a little bit with getting rid of the rubbish but it's a lot of extra work for people who are volunteers.
I'm retired and I'm working more than ever."
Local resident Anne-Marie Thorpe said that instead of handing out fines, Gladstone Regional Council should employ more innovative methods of removing waste.
She says it is unreasonable of council to assume residents want to dump their waste - rather a means to an end.
"I've lived in areas in NSW where the council organises a local pick up day and I think it's brilliant," she said.
"Residents also go along the kerbside looking for items that may be of use to them. I think most ratepayers would be very happy if Gladstone Council began doing something similar."
Currently, Gladstone Regional Council has set fees for the disposal of domestic and commercial waste at Benaraby Landfill and Gladstone Waste Management Centre near Callemondah.
Rates are set at $133.50 per tonne at Benaraby Landfill and $206 per tonne at Gladstone Waste Management Centre.
Green waste is free to dispose of at either location.