In 2014 – 15 Australia produced 64 million tonnes of waste, or 2.7 tonnes per person. Much of this waste is made up of single use plastics, ranging from take away containers to cling wrap, disposable straws and cutlery. This poses a significant threat to our unique marine life including fish, turtles and whales. The Thumbs up for Turtles campaign, an initiative of the National Youth Leadership Council at The Jane Goodall Institute Australia (JGIA) aims to raise awareness about the impact of our waste footprint and promote solutions to minimise our impact on the oceans.
The Thumbs up for Turtles campaign is part of a global Roots & Shoots migration project which was initiated at the Global Roots & Shoots conference in Windsor in the year 2016. Conference attendees selected the critically endangered Hawksbill turtle as a flagship species for this campaign, as it is a species that shares its distribution range with several Roots & Shoots member countries.
- Raise awareness of the human impact on our oceans
- Provide easy, reusable alternatives to swap for disposables in our everyday life
- Establish and grow a network of ‘Turtle Friendly’ cafes and restaurants
- Introduce a ban on single use disposable cutlery in Australia
How can you help
1. Join our Thumbs up for Turtles Campaign by signing up to Roots & Shoots as a group or individual.
2. Post a photo with the hashtag #ThumbsupforTurtles and tell us what you do to reduce your impact on the oceans.
3. Follow us on social media to keep up to date with events happening across Australia.
4. Write a letter to your local minister asking them to support phasing out single use plastics
5. The collective impact of our individual actions that we take every day can go a long way in creating a better planet. Some simple ways to get started on reducing your waste are:
- Using reusable drink bottles and keep cups
- Using reusable shopping bags
- Saying no to straws or using a reusable metal straw
- Buying unpackaged fruits and vegetables
- Picking up any litter that you find, and reducing its chance of finding its way into our waterways and ocean
Want to get started but you don’t know how? Email us on youth(at)janegoodall(dot)org(dot)au