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Plastic Wise Council Expands the Program to Ban Single Use Plastics

Media Release
12 December 2018

City of Darwin’s vision for a plastic wise future forges ahead with the decision at the Ordinary Council meeting last night to expand the current program to phase out single use plastics at market stalls to include all events on Council land.

Last night's decision strengthens the move by Council in July to ban single use plastic items including cups, straws, cutlery and food containers from all Council-run events and markets held on Council land. The July decision also included a ban on helium balloon releases from Council land.

The program is a four staged plan with many elements, such as working with market stallholders and food van operators, already underway following the Council decision in July.

Acting Lord Mayor Andrew Arthur is pleased with the response to date. “It’s really great that the market stallholders, food van operators and others have been generally very supportive of this plan so far.”

The plan endorsed by Council last night expands the phasing out of single use plastics to incorporate a range of measures including:

  • Council’s event permits will include requirements around single use plastics
  • Council will liaise with lease holders around phasing out single use plastics
  • Council grant and sponsorship events and activities will be single use plastics free
  • Council will work with event holders to raise awareness and increase compliance for their events to be single use plastic free
  • Council will trial commercial compositing systems
  • Council will work with other Councils across NT to achieve consistency in this initiative
  • Council will investigate the option for regular visits to markets and events to monitor compliance and levels of implementation

“As Council expands the program we will continue to take an educational and collaborative approach to this issue as this is about behaviour change and we want to work together to make it easier for everyone to make the switch from single use plastics.” Acting Lord Mayor Alderman Arthur said,

“Council has been working with Waste Free NT and the various Market Associations to ensure that all market stall holders and food vans are given information and assistance to help them make the switch on the first of January 2019.”

“We would love everyone to get on board and help Darwin make the switch. Bringing your own containers to the markets is the best option,” he added.

Phasing out single use plastics will reduce the amount of plastics being disposed to landfill or ending up as litter, reduce the impacts on the environment and human health, educate the community to shift away from single use plastic and support retailers already utilising alternatives. Bio plastic alternatives reduce the carbon emissions associated with creating plastic from non-renewable oil resources. 

For more information visit or contact our Climate Change and Environment team 89 300 300.

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