Esperance Shire councillors join Keep Esperance Beautiful clean up

Shire of Esperance councillors joined about 20 volunteers to tidy the town at the latest Keep Esperance Beautiful clean up on Sunday, November 3.

Volunteers collected nearly 50 bags of rubbish from along Fisheries Road.

Shire of Esperance president Ian Mickel, councillors Jennifer Obourne, Ron Chambers and Dale Piercey joined the group to hear their concerns on the environmental issues facing the town.

Councillors introduced themselves and answered questions from recycling to drilling in the Great Australian Bight.

Shire of Esperance president Ian Mickel said he was privileged to be re-elected and looked forward to instigating positive change beside the council.

"I think we've got a great team who can move the agenda forward and they are all very passionate about Esperance," he said.

"In regards to the environmental issues we all know we've got to do something better and recycling is not the whole answer."

Mr Mickel shared his position on drilling in the Bight and said once more information was provided to council they could discuss the issue formally.

"I am basically totally against it," he said.

"Very early in my time on the council for my first time around was the Sanko Harvest, and all the work that was done out there to endeavour to manage the problem and the impact on the wildlife and the money that was spent to try and gather it up off our prime white beaches.

"It was just horrific in my mind and I will never forget it.

"It will never get support from me but council makes decisions, I get one vote and one say."

Councillor Jennifer Obourne discussed her ideas to explore the establishment of a micro recycling plant in Esperance.

Ms Obourne said since the federal government had stopped shipping waste offshore it was time to explore new initiatives.

"I feel like we are at the right place in time for our community to make the most of that opportunity and put our hand up," she said.

"We could be the recycling hub of the South Coast, we've got an underutilised industrial park, we've got a whole country ready to make a shift.

"I think with our new council we have a real opportunity to start from scratch, plan it and have a go."

Councillor Ron Chambers also voiced his stance against drilling in the Bight and said he would make decisions that helped move the community forward.

"I don't believe it is something we can do sustainably," he said

"I've spent a lot of time along the Great Australian Bight and when you see that ocean angry I'm not sure that mankind can do anything or build anything that can withstand that force."

Keep Esperance Beautiful coordinator Noel Fleming said he was pleased with participation and thanked the councillors who volunteered their time.

He encouraged the public to attend the next clean up event at West Beach on Sunday, November 10.

"Come on down to the Under the Boardwalk next Sunday," he said.

"The surfing community are joining in with us to clean up the trash and then we are going to have a display of their surfboards and a paddle out."

For more information on Keep Esperance Beautiful contact Noel Fleming on 0412279181.