CEO Clean-Up engages top tourism operators in fight against plastic pollution

On Friday 22 September, more than 70 prominent leaders gathered at Manly Cove Beach for the annual Take 3 CEO Clean-Up.

This year’s event saw the highest industry engagement in the initiative’s five-year history, with companies including Aveda, Automic Group, and DLA Piper, and Australian tourism operators including Norwegian Cruise Line, Tourism Australia, Destination NSW, and NRMA Parks and Resorts leading the charge.

The event was also attended by Government leaders James Griffin MP, Member for Manly and former NSW Minister for Environment and Heritage, Office of Zali Steggall OAM MP, and Northern Beaches Council.

In one hour, business leaders removed 6,376 littered items from the beach. Among them were sushi soy fish containers, tile spacers, cigarette butts, 10 meters of fishing line, clothing, and polystyrene.

Established in 2019, the Take 3 CEO Clean-Up is a collaboration between Take 3 for The Sea, an Australian charity, and Central Coast digital content marketing agency, LEP Digital. Since the pilot event on the Central Coast in 2019, the initiative has grown globally, attracting several multinational tourism operators who are pledging to make a change.

The CEO Clean-Up provides a unique opportunity for CEOs, business leaders and Government to lead by example, learn about the problem and the solutions, and demonstrate a commitment to the environment.

“Laura Prael [of LEP Digital] initiated the CEO Clean-up – we owe her a debt of gratitude for coming up with the idea, as well as supporting us over four events now,” said Jacquie Riddell, Chief Executive Officer of Take 3 for the Sea.

“It’s an inspired idea: gather like-minded business leaders, expose them to the problem of plastic pollution in our oceans, and give them tools so they can use their leadership position to help solve the problem.”

This year, the CEO Clean-Up welcomed Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) as a major sponsor. NCL is one of the world’s largest cruise lines and, in 2020, became the first cruise line to eradicate single-use plastic water bottles from its ships.

Plastic pollution continues to be one of the biggest threats to oceans, marine life, and the broader environment.

“The ocean produces two out of every three breaths we take,” said Jacquie.

“We rely on ocean health for all life on earth. Yet plastic pollution is choking our oceans and harming and killing marine life.

“Take 3 is on a mission to make plastic pollution a thing of the past by encouraging everyone to take simple ‘human-sized actions’ to solve this ‘planet-sized problem’.”

Laura Prael, Director and Founder of LEP Digital, brought the idea to the Take 3 team having identified an opportunity to work directly with business and industry to make a change. The initiative, which is supported by a pro-bono partnership with Laura’s agency, aims to incite behavioural change in business and create partnerships to help protect our oceans from plastic pollution.

“Businesses have a vital role to play in addressing environmental challenges like plastic pollution; we can all do more,” said Laura.

LEP Digital initially created the strategy, the sub-branding, and designed and developed a custom-built website ( which has evolved over the years as the initiative has grown.

“The LEP Digital team have been such wonderful supporters and advocates for Take 3 for the Sea’s work over many years,” added Jacquie. “That is true leadership.”

Take 3 offers various ways that businesses can support its important work, including corporate programs and sponsorships. More information can be found at:

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