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11 April, 2022


FOR some years now we have been made aware of the harm that certain plastics cause to the environment, both globally and locally.


Erica Mast and Leiona Latu, proud of their Boomerang Bags

Not only are they a hazard to birds, marine animals and ecosystems, but they take an amazing 1,000 years to degrade in a landfill. 

If you’ve seen a plastic bag blowing around in the wind recently and the chances are you probably have, it is a definite fact that anyone reading this column will not be around to see its final demise. Even worse is that the bags don’t break down completely, but instead photodegrade, becoming microplastics that absorb toxins and continue to pollute the environment. 

The scary fact is that Australians dispose of four billion plastic bags per year! 

Besides plastic bags, there is still plenty of other plastic packaging around but, as always, we have to start somewhere and that’s where my story of Boomerang Bags begins. 

The Douglas Shire is 1 of 324 ‘Boomerang Bag Communities’ across the Globe, so even though the name would possibly suggest it, this concept is not just an Aussie one. 

Starting in August of 2017, the programme has been happening here as a Community Development Activity of Mossman Support Services. 

A volunteer group meet weekly to make boomerang bags with donated recyclable material and provides an opportunity for social inclusion, whilst making a sustainable product for community use. 

The bags are used to pack and distribute emergency relief, bread collection and OzHarvest goods to the Douglas Shire. 

People can also borrow the bags for collecting bread and groceries and then bring them back when finished. 

If you’re keen to have a bit of fun, maybe learn some new skills, meet like-minded people and ultimately help our environment, you may be interested to know that the sewing program runs from 10-12 every Thursday at the Mossman Community Centre. 

All machines and materials provided, the only requirement is basic sewing skills and a can-do attitude. Find out more by ringing 4098 2836. 

The bottom line is that the Douglas Shire is committed to being `plastic free’ and this is one way of contributing to this change and educating the community about recycling. 

They say a stitch in time saves nine, so for now it’s Gazza signing out. 

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