Revise Plastic Ban Ordinances in Metro Manila

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Plastic waste mismanagement is unsurprising in Metro Manila, no thanks to its dense population. Of the 2.7 million metric ton waste the Philippines annually generates, a fourth of this is from Metro Manila alone. The displacement of this excess refuse is hazardous to the public, environment, and climate. However, this is only a by-product of the actual issue: overproduction and over-dependence on plastic. Various initiatives attempted to mitigate the repercussions of plastic waste mismanagement, such as paper or metal straws, eco-bags, and eco-bricks, but these have only caused unintended and even opposite results from that of their objectives. As an advocate of responsible production and consumption of plastics for a more sustainable Metro Manila, I believe we need stronger approaches to this plastic predicament now. How? Revise current plastic ordinances in Metro Manila.

This would avert residents from irresponsible plastic consumption, costing them PhP 15.00 in penalties if violated, and force both minor and major establishments to completely abandon using petroleum-based, biodegradable, and oxo-biodegradable plastics, or else pay fines of Php 5,000.00/kilo of prohibited plastic waste for small and medium enterprises, and Php 10,000.00/kilo for large-scale and multinational companies. These strictures will not only reduce plastic waste but will eventually address the problems of sewage system disruptions and excessive flooding rampant in Metro Manila. Moreover, this revision can be a model for sustainability that other cities, and eventually the entire nation, can follow.

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