House debates

Monday, 9 November 2020

Statements by Members

Hardman, Ms Louise

4:36 pm

Photo of Pat ConaghanPat Conaghan (Cowper, National Party) Share this | | Hansard source

Today I'd like to congratulate Louise Hardman, founder of Coffs coast company Plastic Collective for being named as one of the four nominees in the New South Wales section of the Australian of the Year Local Heroes award. Louise truly is a local hero, whose bravery to back her dream of stopping waste plastic from entering the ocean is becoming a reality.

In 1992, when working as a zoologist for the Solitary Islands Marine Reserve, near Coffs Harbour, Louise lost a green turtle in her care. She performed an autopsy, and found large amounts of plastic debris in the turtle's stomach and other organs. From that moment on, Louise has worked tirelessly on her dream of stopping waste plastic from entering the ocean. Key to achieving this goal was Louise's desire to change people's attitude towards plastic.

Here Louise is aligned to our government's goal to take responsibility for our waste, and to use it to drive a $1 billion waste and recycling industry. In February, the Plastic Collective received a grant of almost $2.5 million from our government, through the Cooperative Research Centres Projects, to further develop the company's mobile plastic shredder and extruding machine. Congratulations Louise, I wish you the very best at tonight's New South Wales Australian of the Year 2021 awards ceremony. You're already a winner in our eyes.