States of Jersey - BAN SINGLE USE PLASTIC BAGS
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Italy In January 2011, Italy banned the distribution of plastic bags that are not from biodegradable sources.
Germany All stores in Germany that provide plastic bags must pay a recycling tax.
Brazil imposed bans on plastic bags effective in October 2007.
Australia. The introduction of the ‘Zero Waste’ program in South Australia led to its lightweight bag ban in October 2008. It is estimated that 400 million bags are saved each year.
Africa Widespread bans and charges exist on plastic bags across Africa. South Africa, Uganda, Somalia, Rwanda Botswana, Kenya & Ethiopia all have total bans in place.
China has total bans in effect regards plastic bags since June 1st 2008
France After pressure from shoppers, the biggest supermarkets in France imposed a ban on free carriers. They now charge between 2p and 42p for reusable bags. This has removed millions of free bags from high streets. The city of Paris adopted a full ban, effective January 2007.
...and there are many more countries who impose rules on throw away plastic bags aswell as other countries making moves towards banning them altogether.
First and foremost the issue with these throw away plastic bags is the environmental impact and although you would imagine that we don't cause as much of an impact in Jersey, that isnt true, as our plastic consumption does affect sea life in the English Channel and further afield.
Plastics can last hundreds of years in our seas and landfills and for something that we use for no more than 20 minutes in its whole life cycle, it is a painful impact upon our planet right from the extraction of the materials needed to create them until they reach our seas and kill the sea life inhabiting them.
Secondarily, we have a huge issue in the form of 'throw-away culture' in the western world and in Jersey I have noticed it more and more as I have grown up. We need to move towards a shift in attitudes in order to help the environment and on a larger scale, the planet, as well as how we go about our everyday lives.
Lastly, in my mind it makes a lot more sense to pay once for an attractive looking or in the least, reusable, durable carrier bag than it does to pay every time for these lightweight plastic bags that will either break on the way to your car and if not just get thrown in the bin when you get home, you are actually paying for rubbish. Alternatively, don't pay at all and use anything you already have at home to transport your shopping, just keep them in your car and your problem is solved, and you save money!
Although it has been on the minds of islanders for a long time and actions have been made -
...many people feel as if not enough is being done to push towards more environmentally friendly lifestyles in order to combat the issue of throw away culture in the island.
We can be an example for the rest of the Channel Islands and England by following in the steps of our neighbours in France by starting to think about banning the single use plastic bag and move towards reusable and less damaging options, for a permanent solution to the plastic bag pandemic.
For more information you can go to the following facebook pages:
Zero Waste Jersey
Jersey in Transition
The Good Life Jersey
STAND UP FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND LOVE THE PLANET YOU LIVE ON.
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