Agnes says no to plastic bags
AGNES Water and Seventeen Seventy have just turned their green credentials up a notch by announcing they will become Queensland's first town to go plastic bag free.
All the plan is waiting for now is for businesses to run out of bags.
Discovery Coast Tourism and Commerce secretary Georgia Hughes said the Ban the Bag – Save the Reef campaign had been talked about for years, but now businesses were doing more than just talk.
“With turtles, whales and birdlife being a major tourist attraction, along with our town's unique natural environments, banning plastic bags in our retail outlets and educating the community and visitors about the detrimental effects that plastic bag litter can have on our environment is one positive step towards preserving our natural assets for future generations to enjoy,” she said.
“Saying no to plastic bags is just another step in Agnes Water and Seventeen Seventy's journey to create an environmentally responsible and economically resilient community.”
Ms Hughes said many residents used each plastic bag only for about 15 minutes to an hour, but the potential environmental effect lasted far longer.
“Plastic and polypropylene green bags can take up to 1000 years to break down in the environment,” she said.
Kahunas Pizza Bar and Grill proprietor Bernadette Kerr said the business had just run out of plastic bags.
“The staff said we needed to order more and I said, ‘no, we are not getting any more',” she said.
She said if customers were educated on why the town was not offering the bags, they would understand.
“While this might not fix everything, it is a start and a step forwards,” Ms Kerr said.
But it appears the bags may not become extinct from the seaside town.
Agnes Water Tavern proprietor Gavin Williams said it would be impossible to completely reduce the bags from the business's bottle shop.
“It is something we have to look at carefully,” he said.
“In some respects some people will need a bag. We won't be able to reduce it completely but we should be able to reduce it by 50%.”