People and Places
Scouts tackle microplastics in Port Phillip
by Mornington Peninsula Magazine

​​​​​​​Show off your stuff and shine online

For results driven advertising put your products here

Book your Winter Deep Clean Now!

Having a cleaner environment will help keep your family healthier, happier and more comfortable at home. Contact us today to know more 1300 910 971

​​Plant the seed and reap the rewards

Results-driven online and in print advertising available now

​Every month we have special features

Designed to amplify your business

Create connections online in print and on social media

Your event can be listed on our What’s On pages

1st Red Hill Scout Group leader Shane Dowsett was flicking through the Australian Scout Magazine about two years ago when he saw something interesting. The Street2Bay environmental project, which would include 500 Scouts aged between 11 and 26 from 25 participating groups from Scouts Victoria across Melbourne tackling the environmental crisis facing Port Phillip, was up and running and he wanted to be part of it. He took the idea to the Troop Council, which gave it the green light, and the rest is history.

The results of the two-year study on microplastics and marine life led by the 1st/14th Brighton Sea Scouts, Port Phillip Eco-Centre and Port Phillip Baykeeper are in, and they speak for themselves. With more than 54,000 pieces of litter counted and categorised across the catchment audits from Geelong through to the Peninsula, polystyrene beads, hard plastic pieces, hard microplastics, aluminium pieces, plastic confectionery wrappers, soft plastics and metal bottle tops were found to be the major culprits. Five hundred and forty-six audits across 127 streets were conducted every three months over the 24-month period; 20,190 cigarette butts were also found. Cripes!

Shane explains: “We worked with the Dromana Sea Scouts over 18 months and received training from Port Phillip Baykeeper Neil Blake, who also founded the Port Phillip Eco-Centre. We were given buckets, tape measures, gloves and sheets to fill out as we came across the various plastics we were discovering. Groups of five or six Scouts worked together at each site to collect litter on the footpath, nature strip and in the gutters, doing ‘emu bobs’ picking up any rubbish and recording all findings every three months. The kids were blown away at how many microplastics there were and learning how they endangered wildlife. Polystyrene was a major problem.”

Neil adds: “Around 95 per cent of plastics in our water comes from suburban streets via stormwater drains, rivers and creeks, and litter pollution is having a devastating effect on the functioning of local biodiversity. It’s important to be aware that microplastics can easily be swallowed by local wildlife, and there are increasing volumes being found each year. People may not realise the damage litter has or that cigarette butts in particular contain microplastics, and when they end up in our waterways they can be incredibly harmful to the environment.”

The project’s findings have been presented to federal, state and local government management strategies. Recommendations from the Street2Bay report include picking up plastics in grassy areas before mowing, adding more cigarette bins across public sites, more ‘No Litter’ signs at public and retail sites, and increasing collaborative projects with local environmental groups.

Shane concludes: “This was the first time the 1st Red Hill Scouts were involved in a project like this and we are keen to become involved in more environmental-driven endeavours. The kids were really enthusiastic and did a great job.”

Cheers to our young environmental champions inspired by Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg for continuing to make a difference.


Online  in print  on social media

Banner ads now available on our site

​Thinking of online advertising?

Try a multi media package. Smart advertisers choose Mornington Peninsula Magazine

Step up and shine online

Put your brand or super special offer here


Advertise with us and book your online advertising spot

Promote your business or offer here - Food Wine Produce

Banner Ads now available

Perfect to promote your business to our online readers

Related Posts

Join our VIP club

Automatically go in the draw for a monthly members only prize!

Receive occasional emails to update you on events and special member offers, plus every month a link to Mornington Peninsula Magazine e-version days before it is released.

Opt out at any time. We promise, no spam!

Advertise with us

Target the affluent and discerning consumer who prefers local products and services.  Showcase your brand in Mornington Peninsula Magazine, online and on social media with one booking.

List your event

No matter what type of event you want to promote we have an option to suit your event size and budget.