Don’t be a Tosser!

The Don’t be a Tosser! campaign evolves the conversation with the community about litter. It builds on the Hey Tosser! approach from calling people out as tossers and moves the conversation to the individuals own responsibility for their litter. The campaign uses a range of excuses which are used as humour and irony of the types of excuses people use to justify their behaviour.

cartoon character Rocky the lobster with a littered cigarette but on his head looks unhappyMarine litter campaign

The marine litter campaign features Rocky the lobster and his band Rage Against the Polystyrene with their new smash hit Don't be a Tosser song. Check out the litter-ally awesome video clip!

Report littering from vehicles

If you see someone littering from their vehicle, you can report them to the EPA. Fines from $250 can be issued from your report.

To report littering from a vehicle you need to

  • have actually seen the litter being thrown, or blown, from the vehicle
  • be able to provide the vehicle registration details and the location where the littering took place
  • report the incident within 14 days

Make your report online

Facts about litter

Each year, over 25,000 tonnes of litter is tossed in NSW.

Litter damages our natural environments, harms wildlife and sea creatures, can injure people and makes our spaces less healthy. Cleaning up litter also costs taxpayers a lot of money.

woman dropping food containers on park bench. Text reads the dirty facts about litter

The dirty facts about litter

  • Take away containers are 24% of the litter volume in NSW.
  • For every Australian there are 5 pieces of litter on beaches.
  • 75% of marine litter is plastic and 59% comes from land sources.
  • 33% of the world's turtles and 43% of seabirds have ingested plastics.
  • 20% of wildlife entanglements are caused by plastics such as plastic bag straps
man flicking a cigarette butt out of a car window. Text reads the disgusting truth about tossed cigarette butts

The disgusting truth about tossed cigarette butts

  • 4.5 trillion cigarette butts are littered every year on the whole planet.
  • 7.2 billion cigarette butts are littered annually in Australia.
  • cigarette butts contain 43 known carcinogens such as ammonia, nitrogen dioxide, formaldehyde, hydrogen cyanide and arsenic.
  • one hour is the time it takes for chemicals to leach from cigarette butts when in contact with water.
  • cigarette butt chemicals are toxic to small crustaceans and bacteria. The chemicals persist for at least seven days when littered in waterways.

How to help prevent litter

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Keep a bag in your car to collect rubbish and butts

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Put cigarettes out and then put them in the bin

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Encourage others to pick up their litter

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Put rubbish in a bin or take it with you

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Download a poster (PDF 24KB) for your workplace or community centre

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Post or share infographics about litter

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Help your local council with local litter projects

Litter prevention initiatives

The highest volume of littered items in NSW

  • take away food and single use plastic items such as containers, cutlery and straws
  • single use coffee cups
  • confectionary and snacks – for example wrappers from lollies and ice cream, chip packets
  • cigarette butts
  • drink containers – plastic and glass bottles, cans, milkshake containers
  • plastic bags

Litter volume hotspots in NSW

  • industrial sites
  • highways
  • car parks
  • residential areas
  • retail strips
  • shopping centres
  • beaches
  • recreational parks
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