KABC performance

Report on operations

The KABC’s activities are aligned with the Western Australian Litter Prevention Strategy’s seven priorities.

Priority 1: Research and data

  • To understand the type and extent of littering in WA.
  • To develop litter prevention activities based on a range of data.

National Litter Index

Children and an adult collecting litter The National Litter Index (NLI) is Australia’s only annual measure of litter type and volume based on counts. Sampling is taken twice a year at 983 sites across Australia, including 151 sites in Western Australia within a 50 kilometre radius of Perth CBD. The NLI measures litter at eight different site types: beaches, car parks, highways, industrial sites, parks, residential areas and retail strip precincts and shopping centres.

The number of items of litter per 1,000 square metres (m2) sampled, decreased from 40 to 37 items, representing a 7.5 per cent decrease. The volume of litter per 1,000m2 decreased from 6.3 litres to 5.31 litres, a decrease of 15.7 per cent.

Litter reduction by item occurred at five site types: beaches (-58.6 per cent), retail precincts (-46.9 per cent), shopping centres (-9.3 per cent), major roads and highways (-8.2 per cent), and recreational parks (-1.5 per cent). These reductions were offset to some degree by higher levels counted at car parks (+27.7 per cent), residential streets (+4.7 per cent) and industrial precincts (+3.5 per cent).

The most significant contributors to the decrease in litter was the reduction of plastic industrial containers, plastic domestic containers and plastic soft drink bottles under 1 litre capacity. Volumetric litter loads still remain the highest on major roads and highways (11.72 litres per 1,000m², down from 3.58 litres per 1,000m² in 2017-18).

Most littered items per 1,000m2 included cigarette butts (2,731); soft drink and alcohol cans (447); and a range of plastic items that include drink bottles, bottle tops, snack bags and confectionery wrappers (2,393).

NLI results

Items per 1,000m2
14-15 15-16 16-17 17-18 18-19 18-19
Actual Actual Actual Actual Target Actual
50 51 39 40 38 37
Volumes per 1,000m2
14-15 15-16 16-17 17-18 18-19 18-19
Actual Actual Actual Actual Target Actual
9.58 10.38 7 6.3 6.50 5.31