LitterBlitz: Volunteers giving CVA the competitive edge on collecting litter data 

Armed with pairs of gloves, a mobile phone, and a desire to clean up our catchments, hundreds of Australians stepped out into their local communities and participated in our LitterBlitz competition mid-last year. If you’re unfamiliar with what a LitterBlitz actually is, it’s a spinoff of a popular concept of a BioBlitz (identifying as many species as possible in an area within a specified time).

With our LitterBlitz, we encouraged people to step outside their homes to collect and categorise as much litter as possible during their clean-ups. To keep things exciting, we also had some special prizes on offer for a handful of lucky LitterBlitzers! 

During the period of LitterBlitz 2022 (April 23rd – July 31st), 775 people submitted 125 Litter Stopper entries. From the hustle-bustle suburbs of Sydney, to the beaches of Melbourne, and far-flung places like the opal mining town of Coober Pedy or the school campuses of Alberton Primary School in South Australia, people of all ages, all across Australia were collectively getting into the LitterBlitz spirit! 

We really enjoyed hearing from you about your LitterBlitz adventures, for example, Jonathan who hit the beaches and streets of Freshwater and Chatswood in NSW with his two sons. Jonathan explained why he and his sons felt motivated to step outdoors and clean up and collect litter data in their local area: 

“We wanted to do something for the community. Neighbourhood clean-ups were something that we could easily do at any time (and also great exercise). It was shocking to see how the beach was littered with broken pieces of plastic. These plastics were being swept into the sea with every wave and we were worried that it might harm the marine life.” 

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And we couldn’t agree more! Getting out to your local beaches and cleaning up is one of the easiest ways you can contribute to tackling ocean litter. But most importantly, his advice to others looking to get on the LitterBlitz train? “Consider volunteering together with friends or family to enhance your experience. It makes it seems like you are on leisure time. 


During our LitterBlitz for 2022, volunteers removed 1,427 kgs of rubbish from across Australia’s parks, rivers, and beaches, with critical data about the types of litter collected being submitted via the Litter Stopper mobile app. Beach Patrol, the makers of the Litter Stopper app, then share their litter data openly with local community groups and Councils, as well as research bodies such as the CSIRO. This open data sharing improves our understanding of the distribution of litter across Australia, as well as provides insights about what specific items are our most common ocean litter offenders.

As an example of the great work that Litter Stopper has done to stop litter at the source, check out this incredible video of Warrnambool East Primary School. The school successfully tracked pieces of bright red plastic fragments washed up on their local beaches back to plastic cray fishing pots in Victoria, leading to the creation of some very ingenious plastic-free cray pots! 

Keen to read more about our other Litter Stopper heroes? Be inspired by Mark in Launceston, who is leading the charge with the local clean-up group Litter Free Launnie and logging his group’s litter data with the help of Litter Stopper. Or why not read about Charlotte in Victoria, an inspirational Cub Scout who took to the Yarra River on kayak and logged the litter collected on her ‘paddles against plastic’!  

Congratulations to the major prize winners of LitterBlitz 2022, Miles K. from NSW, Joshua K. from NSW and Matthew P. from QLD, as well as our other keen users of Litter Stopper! While our marine life isn’t able to say thank you for contributing to cleaner waterways and a greater knowledge of ocean litter across our catchments, we certainly can! 

While the LitterBlitz competition is well and truly over, there’s no better time like the present to head outdoors and complete your own LitterBlitz. By doing so, you’ll be contributing to our knowledge of litter in our local areas – where it’s located, how much is out there, and what kinds of litter are most common. This allows CVA to work with groups such as community groups, businesses, local Councils and the CSIRO to tackle ocean litter at its source. 

Ready to get started with your own LitterBlitz? Get started by downloading Litter Stopper via the link below. 


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#SeaToSource is a project supported through funding from the Australian Government. 



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Australian Government