Mayor and monk lend a hand to Clean Up

Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery, Venerable Miao You and Clean Up Australia Day’s Ian Kiernan  at the Nan Tien Buddhist Temple. Picture: ADAM McLEAN

Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery, Venerable Miao You and Clean Up Australia Day’s Ian Kiernan at the Nan Tien Buddhist Temple. Picture: ADAM McLEAN

Beer bottles and cigarette butts continue to be major sources of rubbish across the country, according to last year’s Clean Up Australia Rubbish Report.

Alcoholic beverage containers accounted for 15per cent of reported rubbish items removed from clean-up sites in 2013, while cigarette butts accounted for 13per cent.

Chip packets, bottle caps and plastic food bags were also among the main offenders.

Clean Up Australia Day’s founder Ian Kiernan said while the figures were ‘‘disturbing’’, people were more aware than ever of the importance of keeping their towns rubbish-free.

‘‘I see people that come to us and say we do that, our swimming club does that, we don’t register we just do it, and on a weekly basis,’’ he said.

‘‘It’s a great event but it’s more than that, we’re changing the behaviour of people.’’

Mr Kiernan was  at the Nan Tien Temple yesterday with Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery to launch the annual event in Wollongong, which is on Sunday, March 2.

‘‘By getting out on Clean Up day [people] discover the scale of the problem and realise it can be fixed through their own efforts.’’

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