Litter prevention

Council’s commitment to reducing litter

Willoughby residents are passionate about maintaining a clean and healthy environment. Litter not only looks bad, but can be harmful to ourselves, our natural environments and our marine ecosystems. Litter is extremely difficult to remove once it’s in waterways or bushland, with significant costs involved.

Littering is illegal. You must use a waste bin to dispose of your litter and if there are none available, you are responsible for holding on to that litter until you can find a bin. Council Rangers actively investigate littering and will issue on the spot fines. These range from $80 - $750+.

Council is dedicated to reducing litter in our public places and removing it from our environment and waterways. Council has installed gross pollutant traps and water sensitive urban design to capture litter before they enter waterways. Willoughby’s streets and public places are cleaned regularly to remove litter. Council has also installed bins and free bottle refill stations in high traffic areas.

In partnership with the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Council is committed to ensure that litter enforcement activity is part of our everyday activities. Council provides advice and support for  officers of other local government across the state to better improve their littering enforcement activities. Council also runs litter reduction projects to focus on hotspot areas, which are funded through the NSW EPA Litter Reduction grants. The NSW EPA has more information about littering and state government prevention programs.

What can I do to reduce my litter?

  • Place all rubbish in bins, or keep it with you until you find a bin.
  • Throw all cigarette butts in the bin.
  • Pick up litter when you find it and throw it in a bin.
  • Only place recyclable items in the recycling bin.
  • Pick up your pet waste.
  • Secure your items so they can’t fly out of vehicles.
  • Use a reuseable bottle and refill for free.
  • Use a reuseable coffee cup.

Reporting litterers

If you see someone littering, you can report them online to the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA). 

The first time you submit a report you'll need to create an account. Have your mobile phone with you so you can receive and SMS and verify your details. 

If you don't have a mobile phone or are under 18, call the EPA on 13 15 55

Details that significantly help catch litterers are:

  • Time and location of littering activity.
  • What has been littered (for example, lit or unlit cigarette, bag of rubbish or pet droppings.)
  • Description of the litterer (hair colour, height, clothing, appearance.)
  • Number plate, make, model and colour of vehicles (if applicable.)