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MEDIA RELEASE 28 September 2011 Keep the Sea Free of Debris – Creatively! To celebrate Coastcare Week 2011, Cradle Coast NRM is running a Marine Debris Sculpture Competition for schools in North West Tasmania. Now in its sixth year, interest from teachers and students in the Coastcare Week competition is expected to top the 120 poster entries received from nine schools across the region in 2010. This year’s sculpture competition theme is Keep the Sea Free of Debris. Students will be collecting and recording marine debris and then creating a sea-creature sculpture or collage from the human-made materials they’ve found. The winning sculptures and collages will be exhibited at the Burnie Regional Library from 5 to 21 December to coincide with Coastcare Week. The competition encourages students to discover more about their coastal and marine environment, the negative impacts of marine debris and how to keep the region’s coasts and seas healthy for the future. Program Facilitator, Karina Rose, said that the Marine Debris Sculpture Competition is an excellent opportunity for students to express their creativity and interest in their local coastal environment. “This year students will also be recording the debris they find and contributing to the National Marine Debris Project Database. This database is managed by the Tangaroa Ocean Blue Society who take action to ensure these items don’t end up on our beaches in the future”, Mrs Rose said. Prizes will be awarded to the student judged as the Overall Marine Debris Sculpture Winner plus in Grade categories and a People’s Choice award. A prize will also be awarded to the student who collects and records the most marine debris. The competition is open to all Primary and High Schools in North West Tasmania from 29th September until the 25th November with the guidelines available from the Cradle Coast NRM website at Enquiries are welcome by calling Cradle Coast NRM Facilitator, Karina Rose, on 6431 6285. End… • Marine debris is any human-made item that ends up on the beach or in the ocean and can include plastic, metal, glass, ceramics or wood. Some examples of marine debris that can be found in our region are packaging for drinks and food, nylon materials used in fishing line, polystyrene cups, rubber tyres, light bulbs, cloth and cardboard. •

Tips to reduce the problem of marine debris include using green bags instead of plastic bags; buying products with minimal packaging; recycling plastic (HDPE) bags, packing a waste-free lunch in reusable containers or wraps, putting rubbish in the bi, and organising or participating in a beach clean-up day.

Cradle Coast Natural Resource Management (NRM) works with community, industry, private enterprise and government to manage and improve our natural resources to ensure a healthy future for our region. Cradle Coast NRM is an independent committee hosted by the Cradle Coast Authority. This initiative is supported by Cradle Coast NRM through funding from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country. Media Contacts: Karina Rose – Facilitator Ph: 6431 6285 or 0409 240 864

Amanda Wilson – Communication Manager Ph: 6431 6285