NOOSA REFRESH: These UQ students are looking to helping facilitate the drive away from single-use plastic in Noosa.
NOOSA REFRESH: These UQ students are looking to helping facilitate the drive away from single-use plastic in Noosa.

Resorts pushed to punt plastic bottles

PLASTIC is far from fantastic in Noosa according to its peak tourism body which is leading an industry charge to ditch resorts stocking single-use throwaway bottles.

The move against plastic bottles is part of Tourism Noosa’s Refresh Noosa program in partnership with the Queensland Tourism Industry Council and the University of Queensland.

It comes amid reports two million plastic bottles go into Noosa landfill each year.

The Refresh Noosa groups are engaging in an statewide research project inspired by Tourism Noosa’s introduction of new eco-friendly, refillable range of guest amenities.

This aims to eliminate the small, single-use plastic bottles that are generally found in resorts and apartments.

UQ Business School masters students are studying the wastage associated with these and the opportunities for businesses to switch to more sustainable and cost effective bulk refillable amenities.

In August a group of UQ students visited Noosa to interview Stay Noosa general manager Liam Kennedy about his Culgoa Point Beach Resort, which has already made the change to the Refresh Noosa bulk amenities.

Mr Kennedy was delighted to work closely with the team at Tourism Noosa.

“I believe Refresh Noosa is a great initiative,” he said.

“Stay Noosa has a huge emphasis on sustainability and we are impressed with the results after moving away from single use products.

“So much so that we will be rolling out the refillable bottles in our other resorts and holiday homes in Noosa.

Students also visited Seahaven Noosa whose management was set to trial refillable guest amenities.

Queensland Tourism Industry Council chief executive Daniel Gschwind said the shared goal with Tourism Noosa was to identify the impact that single-use amenities were having on the environment.

“The project will provide some insight into the current quantity of single-use plastic guest amenities being disposed of in landfills, as well as alternative opportunities that we can provide to our members which will assist in moving towards more sustainable alternatives,” Mr Gschwind said.

“We are proud to partner with the University of Queensland and Tourism Noosa on this important issue.

Tourism Noosa business development manager Anna Macklin said initial research indicated more than two million single-use bottles were going to landfill every year in Noosa.

“We are thrilled that Queensland Tourism Industry Council is passionate about this and have also recognised the importance of reducing single-use plastics in the accommodation sector and we are proud that our Refresh Noosa program was the catalyst for this study,” she said.

The report is expected to be finalised next month.