11 year-old Townsville plastic free champ inspiring community ‘excited’ to represent Queensland

Landcare Australia

While most kids are looking forward to the Christmas holidays, one Townsville youngster is doing all she can to protect marine life from plastic pollution.

To celebrate Coastcare Week, Emily Walker lead a group of volunteers from Coastal Dry Tropics Inc in a plastic clean up at Pallarenda Beach and nearby Three Mile Creek on Wednesday.
‘It’s Coastcare Week this week and I’m very grateful to be working with our local Landcare group,’ she explained. ‘Marine life is suffering from all the plastic in the ocean, and while climate change is the bigger threat to the Great Barrier Reef, single use plastic sent to landfill, combining with chemicals from other materials, release greenhouse gases which contribute to climate change. So single-use plastic by themselves kill marine life but they also contribute to climate change which is killing the reef.’
A Strawbassador for plastic pollution clean-up movement, Straw No More, Emily and founder Molly Steer were recently awarded the Virgin Coastcare Award at the 2019 Queensland Landcare Awards.
And Emily said she’s very ‘excited to represent QLD at the National Landcare Awards next year.
‘Straw No More won the Virgin Coastcare Award at the 2019 Queensland Landcare Awards and we’re trying to do great stuff in our community heading into the National Awards in Sydney where we’ll represent Queensland next year.’
And working with Straw No More and Landcare has been inspiring work for the young student at her school.
‘My school has been amazing. Working with these organisations has allowed me to start my own Strawbassador Eco Council and we’re meeting lot of passionate people every day who want to change the world.’
**Running December 2 – 8, Coastcare Week celebrates community volunteer groups made up of everyday Australians who care passionately about the protection and management of our coastal and marine environments. Thousands of volunteers from across the country form more than 500 Coastcare groups and, alongside their Landcare peers, put into action long-term, practical solutions in their local areas to look after and improve our natural resources. Landcare Australia supports, promotes and raises funds for the Coastcare group movement across Australia.
**Straw No More was founded by then 9 year old Molly Steer in Cairns in 2017. The core model of the organisation was to eliminate plastic straws in schools across Australia. Since then the Strawbassador program has been launched to empower young people around the nation to help spread Molly’s message about single-use plastic reduction.
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