The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation provides environmental and water resource services and management for the Indian Ocean Territories - Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands. This is done under a Service Delivery Arrangement between the Australian Government and the Western Australian Government.
The services we provide in the Indian Ocean Territories are fully funded by the Australian Government.
The Indian Ocean Territories Marine Debris Project commenced in 2017 as a citizen science project led by us with assistance from not-for-profit organisation Tangaroa Blue Foundation and the Shires of Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Islands.
The project aims to help the communities of Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Island (more than 2,500 kilometres northwest of Perth) deal with the marine debris that floats onto the islands with the tides. The project also helps to pinpoint the source of the marine debris to assist governments and not-for-profit organisations in reducing waste streams into the oceans.
The Shires of the Indian Ocean Territories now lead the project. With support from their communities and our team, the Shires collect marine debris from their shores, resulting in protection for turtle and native bird habitats and some of the collected waste plastics capable of being reused for infrastructure products.
View the videos below to find out how the project started, and how the Shires and communities of the Indian Ocean Territories continue to demonstrate their commitment to managing marine debris washing ashore in their unique pristine environments.