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PLEASE HELP SAVE OUR MARINE LIFE, OCEANS AND FOOD CHAIN! Just like the EU have done and many other countries are currently doing, we, The People of Australia need to see Australia take the much needed approach of banning single use plastic by 2022. WHY? There are currently 8 million tons of plastic waste entering our oceans globally each year and this is set to double by 2025. By 2050, it's estimated that there will be more plastic weight than fish in our oceans. There is a floating plastic garbage patch in the ocean that is estimated to be three times the size of France. (In between Hawaii and California). What this means for our marine life, the future of human health and the quality of our water is devastating. The UN has announced that micro plastics, (tiny, broken down pieces of plastic) in the sea are a growing threat to human health and our marine life and sea birds are dying from plastic ingestion and strangulation. A prime example of this is the whale that just washed up dead in Indonesia, (right on Australia's doorstep). This is a visual and stark representation of what is currently happening in our oceans. The contents of the whale's stomach included- 115 plastic cups 25 plastic bags 4 plastic thongs 1000 + pieces of plastic. In Hawaii, a turtle washed up dead with over 1,000 pieces of plastic in it's stomach and "half of dead baby turtles found by Australian scientists have stomachs full of plastic". (Source - Independent Newspaper UK). There are currently more pieces of micro plastic in our oceans than there are stars in our galaxy. This ocean plastic pollution crisis is not just affecting our marine life, it's devastating for our sea birds too and land animals are also affected as plastic litter is EVERYWHERE. It's estimated that around 90% of sea birds have plastic in their stomachs and Albatross fledglings are dying from burst stomachs from a diet of plastic pieces. (See 'Albatross - the film, by Chris Jordan). Australia are using around 10 million plastic straws every day Over 10 million plastic bags per day 666,000 tonnes of plastic waste produced by Australian households every year. and very year, the waste we generate is growing at twice the rate of our population! (ABC's War on Waste statistics) 1 billion coffee cups are used in Australia every year.These are not recycled. That's around 50,000 cups binned per hour. (War on Waste) Bottled water also creates large amounts of waste. Plastic bottles are among the 10 most common rubbish items picked up on Clean up Australia Day. Australia recycles only 36% of PET plastic drink bottles, so around 373 million plastic water bottles end up as waste each year. (University of Wollongong). Around 7 Billion cigarette butts are littered in Australia every year. (Keep Australia Beautiful Queensland) The items that The People of Australia request to be Banned by Australia in 2020 list are as follows - Plastic straws (with an exception for people who need straws for medical reasons) ALL plastic bags (including the thicker plastic bags and supermarket style grocery, (fruit and vegetable bags). No exceptions. Plastic cutlery, plates, bowls, stirrers and cups etc Cotton buds Polystyrene Helium balloons Unnecessary plastic wrapping. This is just a starting point. The list is comprehensive if we are to make a positive difference in our oceans to our marine life and to the future of human health.. Other actions that The People of Australia request are - Cigarettes and single use plastic are banned from ALL beaches and by all waterways in Australia Water re-fill stations readily available all around Australia and grants/incentives given to water re-fill companies Supermarkets to be given strict targets to reduce their fruit and vegetable plastic wrapping by 2020 All supermarkets and delis to accept customer's containers for deli produce Retailers to have to offer bottled drinks in alternative (and more sustainable) packaging to plastic (alongside plastic to start with) - with targets to increase the sustainable option over time. ALL food packaging to come from sustainable sources and recyclable A drastic reduction in supermarket food waste (that is due to size and shape of fruit and vegetables) Harsh fines for discarding fishing gear in the ocean and recycling incentives offered Stricter fines on the littering of cigarettes Incentives given to families for food waste composting for 1 year until it becomes mainstream and habit formed The issue of plastic in cigarettes to be addressed Again, this is a starting point and the list is comprehensive. European parliament statement "According to the European Commission, more than 80% of marine litter is plastics. The products covered by these restrictions constitute 70% of all marine litter items. Due to its slow rate of decomposition, plastic accumulates in seas, oceans and on beaches in the EU and worldwide. Plastic residue is found in marine species – such as sea turtles, seals, whales and birds, but also in fish and shellfish, and therefore in the human food chain". The People of Australia would like the Australian Parliament to take this environmental crisis just as seriously as the European Parliament have done. This petition is put forward by 'Plastic Free Future' Find us at - https://www.facebook.com/plasticfreefuture/ (Copy and paste the link). Please sign and share for the future of our marine life, our oceans, our sea birds and human health. Please also consider promoting this petition this with even just a few dollars!