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Octogenarian eco-warrior wins 2020 NSW Environmental Citizen of the Year State Award

Octogenarian eco-warrior wins 2020 NSW Environmental Citizen of the Year State Award

Eighty-one-year-old eco-warrior Robert Jolley from south-west Riverina has been announced as the State winner of the 2020 NSW Environmental Citizen of the Year Award, which coincides with World Environment Day.

Minister for Environment Matt Kean said the award celebrates community champions, everyday individuals and organisations working towards bettering the environment through litter reduction or implementing local environmental initiatives.

“This award is all about acknowledging and celebrating those who make a real difference in our local communities. Mr Jolley, better known as Bob has proved age is no barrier when it comes to protecting the environment.”

“Mr Jolley has proactively raised more than $25,000 for his local skatepark and other community programs in the Wentworth Shire by collecting bottles and cans for recycling,” Mr Kean said.

From the amount of money Mr Jolley donated, it’s estimated he’s collected more than 294,000 bottles and cans that will no longer end up in landfill.

The environmental award is part of the annual NSW Local Citizen of the Year Award held on Australia Day, where members of the public are invited by their local councils to nominate fellow citizens. The State winner will receive $5,000 to support their community initiative.

Chair of the Australia Day Council of NSW, Andrew Parker, said Mr Jolley was selected for his commitment and generosity in donating all the profits from his efforts to local projects.

“The Environmental Citizen of the Year Award is an opportunity to recognise the incredible efforts of those in our community who have risen to the challenge to tackle environmental issues – every project, big or small goes a long way,” Mr Parker said.

Now in its second year, the initiative is sponsored by Return and Earn, the largest litter reduction program ever undertaken in NSW. Since December 2017, more than 3.6 billion drink containers have been returned for recycling through the scheme.

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