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Nature conservation

Nature conservation

Unscrupulous businesses illegally dumping waste People dumping cars Residents and companies dumping green waste People dumping household waste Animals moving litter People littering at picnics, camping and other recreational activities

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This waste pollution may result from:

  • people dumping household waste
  • people dumping cars
  • residents and companies dumping green waste
  • unscrupulous businesses illegally dumping waste
  • animals moving litter
  • people littering at picnics, camping and other recreational activities, such as hiking, fishing and riding.

Nature Conservation areas, including national parks, conservation areas and state forests, can be hotspots for littering and illegal dumping[1]. Littering can originate from campers and day-users leaving rubbish behind or discarding fishing gear. Individuals and unscrupulous businesses sometimes illegally dump waste, like car bodies, tyres and green waste, in remote areas to avoid attending a waste transfer station or paying disposal fees.

Littering can also be dangerous where it causes, or is likely to cause, harm to a person, property or the environment, and tough penalties apply. This includes:

  • throwing a lit cigarette butt into bushland
  • leaving a hypodermic needle in a park
  • smashing a glass bottle on the footpath
  • throwing an item from a moving vehicle at a pedestrian or cyclist.

The Queensland Government conducted a community-based pilot project to address illegal dumping in the Beerburrum forest, approximately 300 km2 of exotic pine plantation, open eucalypt forest and rainforest, managed by HQPlantations Pty Ltd. A coordinated Clean Up Australia Day event with HQPlantations Pty Ltd collected 26 tonnes of waste. Data showed that most of the illegally dumped material was household waste, including furniture and general litter, followed by tyres and green waste.

Waste in the nature conservation sector moves through the environment via four pathways:


  1. ^ Seror, N & Portnov, BA (2018), 'Identifying areas under potential risk of illegal construction and demolition waste dumping using GIS tools', Waste Management. [online], vol. 75, pp. 22-29. Available at:

Last updated: 10 May 2021

This page should be cited as:

Department of Environment, Science and Innovation, Queensland (2021) Nature conservation, WetlandInfo website, accessed 18 March 2024. Available at:

Queensland Government
WetlandInfo   —   Department of Environment, Science and Innovation