Rubbish collected from Bunbury’s beaches by volunteers is helping an environmental charity monitor marine pollution as well as prevent potential injury to marine life.
Detailed data on debris collected during clean-ups by Project Shorelines, spearheaded by Anita Kelly, is recorded and sent to the Tangaroa Blue Foundation.
The foundation coordinates an on-ground network of volunteers, communities, organisations and agencies around the country to monitor the effects of marine debris on a State, national and international level.
Project Shorelines, which started in 2009, covers a coastal area stretching 10km from South Dalyellup, BP Beach and Turkey Point, to The Cut.
The project has been has been awarded a Keep Australia Beautiful grant to help the volunteers continue their work.
About 50 community members and 85 local students have helped in Project Shoreline clean-ups.
The project aims to reduce marine debris and increase the recovery and recycling of rubbish collected, particularly drink bottles and cartons, for the protection of the marine environment.
All containers collected have been recycled.
Ms Kelly said so far this year more than 2000 recyclable drink containers had been removed.
“The most common items are plastic products like bait bags, cleaning product containers, sauce, shampoo and drink bottles, plastic bags and even balloons,’’ she said.
“People don’t realise that when they release them into the sky, they eventually end up as rubbish in the ocean.”
Ms Kelly said drink containers’ impact on marine debris worldwide was significant.
She said volunteers were always needed and someone was needed to take the helm next year.