Don’t Rubbish Our State – The Rubbish Report for Queensland

Don’t Rubbish Our State – The Rubbish Report for Queensland

Over the last 26 years, Clean Up Australia Day volunteers have donated more than 31 million hours removing more than 331 thousand tonnes of rubbish from their streets, beaches, parks, bushland and local waterways.

That’s the equivalent of end to end fully laden utes from Sydney to Brisbane via the coastline.

The Clean Up Australia Day Rubbish Report is a snapshot of all the different types of rubbish collected on Clean Up Australia Day, including the top ten items found, major sources of rubbish and the types of rubbish collected and the most polluted sites.

Here is the “Rubbish Report” for Queensland:

Clean-Up Australia Sites Registered: 1,503 [1,493 in 2016]

Estimated Volunteers: 115,708 [93,299 in 2016]

Estimated Rubbish Removed: 3,306.6 ute loads [3,122 in 2016]

Volunteer hours: 231,416 [186,598 in 2016]

The 2017 Rubbish Report is a snapshot of rubbish removed by Clean Up Australia Day volunteers. In Queensland, the Report is based on rubbish surveyed from 236 locations [105 in 2016]


  • Glass and metals each increased by 2{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}; Plastic and Polystyrene each by 1{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}
  • Paper decreased by 4{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}; Miscellaneous items and Wood each by 1{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}
  • Rubber remained consistent

THE TOP 10 RUBBISH ITEMS AS A PERCENTAGE OF THE TOTAL RUBBISH SURVEYED GROUPED DATA ({7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8})

  1. Non – Food packaging 42.1
  2. Beverage Containers 17.1
  3. Food packaging 15.0
  4. Beverage rubbish 8.8
  5. Chip and confectionery wrappers 3.7
  6. Plastic bags 3.6
  7. Other [non-identified] items 3.3
  8. Plastic toys, sporting, ropes and straps 1.5
  9. Construction materials 1.4
  10. Clothing 1.2

INDIVIDUAL ITEM COUNT {7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}

  1. Cigarette Butts 33.1
  2. Cigarette Lighters 17.5
  3. Plastic bottle caps & lids 6.4
  4. Alcoholic beverage bottles 5.6
  5. Small pieces of paper 5.1
  6. Soft drink cans 4.4
  7. PET drink containers 3.7
  8. Alcoholic beverage cans 3.2
  9. Metal bottle caps 3.0
  10. Garbage/rubbish bags 2.8 – Plastics 38{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} Polystyrene 4{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} Glass 9{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} Rubber 1{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} Paper 9{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} Metal 12{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} Wood 0{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} Miscellaneous 27{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}


  • Alcoholic beverage bottles increased by 3.7{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}., soft drink bottles by 1.6{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}, PET containers by 3.7{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} and Alcoholic beverage cans by 3.2{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}.
  • Associated beverage rubbish increased by 1.2{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}.
  • Cigarette Butts again came in as the single most counted item this year, representing 33.1{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} of reported rubbish That is a disappointing increase of 7.5{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} over 2016.
  • Cigarette lighters came in next at 17.7{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} – making them the largest item increase in this year’s count and elevating them into the Top Ten for the first time
  • Beverage rubbish such as bottle caps and lids increased by 4.2{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8}
  • On a more positive note, volunteers recorded an 8.1{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} drop in confectionery and chip wrappers, a 1.5{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} decrease in garbage/rubbish bags and a similar fall in small pieces of paper.
  • Six location types including parks, roadways and watercourses reported increased average rubbish counts in 2017.
  • Shops/malls reported a staggering 98{7a2eb471754f58cbf59baa93ee81dc7b74d186cb2e306188f39c85ba863dbab8} increase in their average count to 1,088 per location this year Two locations reported decreased average item counts: