Name: Make the Switch (operating under Plastic Free Byron brand).
Community: Byron Shire, NSW.
Project Initiated: April 2018.
On-ground commencement: July 2018.
Project Model: Whole of community, open to all food retailers and selected markets & events.
Co-ordinator: Coral Latella (Year 1), Clare Sullivan (Year 2).
Social Media: @plasticfreebyron.
Project Partners: Byron Shire Council, Plastic Free Byron, Clean Coast Collective, Bay FM, The Echo News, Santos Organics, TAP.
Funding Bodies: Byron Shire Council, under a NSW EPA Waste Less, Recycle More initiative funded from the Waste Levy.
In its first 9 months, Make the Switch eliminated over 250,000 single-use plastic items. Find out more in our 2018/19 Report below. Note that there was a gap in on-ground work from April 1-Aug 15, 2019 due to funding constraints.
Our current impact (as at Dec 31, 2019) is...
*Plastic Free Champions are members that have eliminated all of our key plastic items (straws, coffee cups & lids, takeaway containers & lids, food ware (cutlery, plates, cups etc), water bottles & bags).
Transitioned the majority of Byron Community Market food vendors to plastic free.
Byron Community Market, Byron Artisan Market and Mullumbimby Agricultural Show developed Plastic-Free Policies and detailed action plans, and improved waste management processes - including introducing composting streams and managing bin signage and collection.
Started to implement our water strategy to provide businesses a viable alternative to selling single-use water bottles. Working on developing a trial with Byron Council to provide businesses with affordable reusable water bottles to on-sell for a profit and offset income loss from eliminating plastic water bottles.
Created new linkages between major manufacturers and local suppliers to better accommodate product needs in the Byron area.
Worked with local supplier Greenpack to provide product discounts to members.
Increased resources for local events, including better signage, and worked to improve access for local events to to reusable systems.