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In a state of trash as worst litterers

THE premier state of NSW has a claimed another dubious No. 1 - we are the nation's worst litterers.

The state's climb to the top spot was confirmed yesterday with the release of the Keep Australia Beautiful National Litter Index, which had NSW overtaking last year's title holder Western Australia.

National chairman Don Chambers said there had been an alarming increase in rubbish dumping in NSW.

The Opposition blamed it on the State Government, which raised waste levies more than $70 a tonne in Sydney.

"The most worrying part in NSW is what we call illegal dumping of the bigger items that are thrown out of cars or dumped on roadsides," Mr Chambers said. "That is how NSW reached the top."

Mr Chambers recommended a dob in a litterbug scheme like Victoria's, which has a hotline to take tips.

In other states, cigarettes, paper and plastic were most common when Keep Australia Beautiful completed a litter survey in May.

Opposition Environment spokeswoman Catherine Cusack blamed the litter increase on waste costs.

"The Keneally Labor Government is not only failing to enforce its own litter laws, its decision to tax rubbish up to $70 a tonne is making the problem worse," she said.

She said Sydney's levy rose more than $70 a tonne, the Hunter's more than $65 and the Illawarra more than $20.

A spokeswoman for Environment Minister Frank Sartor said NSW ranked well below the national average on a per head basis.

By Gemma Jones

Source: The Daily Telegraph

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