Potluck promotes plastic free July

Glen Cooper and his kids Leanne, 14, and Nathan, 5. cooking. Photo by Damjan Janevski. 287210_01

Fatima Halloum

It’s estimated by the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment that one million tonnes of Australia’s annual plastic consumption is single-use plastic and only 13 per cent is subsequently recycled.

To celebrate the beginning of Plastic Free July, the Werribee River Association will host a potluck and plastic free party, at 6.30pm on Saturday, July 2 at the Wunggurrwil Dhurrung Community centre.

Glen Cooper says the event is the perfect opportunity for anyone wanting to protect the environment but unsure of where to start.

“It’s a really welcoming environment, for the average punter, to see what they can do,” he said.

“You can have a bite to eat, chat to a few people, listen to some good music, I think it’s the perfect event.”

Mr Cooper is a volunteer for Werribee River Association, The Beach Patrol clean up group, Sea Shepard and the SES and said he has a keen interest in the environment and sustainable living.

“There’s a quote that says, ‘it’s only one plastic straw, says one billion people’, the same thing is in reverse, saying ‘i’m just cutting down on plastics’, times that by four million people, we can actually make quite an impact,” he said.

Mr Cooper said he comes from a “steak and chips” type of family, but recently began attempting to introduce vegan and vegetarian meals to his family.

“I’ve got four children, [teaching them] the importance of plastic free, recycling and sustainability and green liveability,” he said.

“You don’t have to be suddenly from zero to 100, you don’t have to become a tree hugging hippie overnight, reduce just one or two things in your house that are single use plastic, and if we all did that it makes a massive difference.”