Stop Plastic Bags and Single Use Plastics in Sri Lanka

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Dear Government Officials,

Plastic bags and single use plastics are an environmental disaster, especially in a coastal country such as Sri Lanka, the use of plastic bags, lunch sheets and PET bottles and the incorrect disposal into waterbodies can cause extreme harm to marine life.

Sri Lanka is currently one of the Top 10 Marine Polluters in the world, and we still haven't taken the extreme measures needed to combat the damage we are doing to our environment.

Which is why we want to appeal to the Government of Sri Lanka to allow retail stores and supermarkets to charge extra for all plastics bags provided to the consumer. This would encourage the consumer to actively bring their reusable bags to stores, which will effectively break the cycle of pollution present in this country. 

Furthermore, the extra cost charged for the plastic bags should be monitored and ensured that the proceedings go towards a sustainable cause. This will create awareness and foster a healthy attitude towards sustainability within the country as well as within the retail stores and supermarkets. Finally, in the future, to ensure a  plastic free Sri Lanka, we can offer paper bags in stores as well.

The current attitude we have towards the excessive usage of single use plastics needs to change and the changes have to start at the manufacturers and at the stores. Tighter regulations need to be introduced towards the use of single use plastics. Higher taxes can be put on single use plastic products and its importation to make stores more conscious of their plastic bag usage. If such changes are introduced we'll be able to see a greener Sri Lanka very soon.

By putting an extra charge on every plastic bag provided to the consumer, it will create an environment in which reusable bags will become the norm and single use plastic bags will be forgotten. 

And eventually Sri Lanka will be an eco friendly, green country. We would love your help in making this dream a reality. 

Thank you.

-Shenela Fernando and The Pearl Protectors Organization.