June 28, 2022

Goodbye to single use plastic bags Ban to take effect from January 2019

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By Olivia Rose From TC Weekly News

SINGLE use plastic shopping bags will soon be removed from supermarkets and shops across the TCI as the Government plans to crack down on the environmental villain.

This comes as the Government forges ahead with its plan to better preserve the environment and safeguard the territory’s ‘beautiful by nature’ reputation.

At the latest meeting of Cabinet on September 26, members approved a ban on the import of single use plastic bags.

The import ban will come into effect from January 1, 2019, and a ban on the use of single use plastic bags by retailers will come into effect on May 1, 2019.

Cabinet also approved a list of alternative bags which can be used by retailers from May 1, 2019, on which reduced custom tariff rates on some will be applied.

On August 10 residents and members of the business community were urged to complete an online survey on single use plastic bags.

The aim of the survey was to determine the public’s current use of single use plastic bags and what barriers exist that make it difficult or challenging to use reusable bags.

It took into consideration the negative impact plastics have on the community and the territory as a whole.

It also factored in gender specific behaviour, location, age and household dynamics.

The data collected and compiled from the survey was subsequently used to design a programme to assist and support the communities to reduce their use of plastic bags in preparation of the review and consideration of a total removal of plastic bags from supermarkets and other retailers.

Many local grocers, hotel and restaurants have already started making efforts to eliminate single use plastic products.

Beaches resort recently announced the elimination of single-use plastic straws and stirrers at all its 19 properties across the Caribbean.

The move, the all-inclusive resort chain said on September 18, will result in the elimination of 21,490,800 single-use plastic straws and stirrers across its resorts each year.

Instead eco-friendly paper straws will be available upon request.

The statement added that the move represented the first phase of the group’s programme to move beyond single-use plastics, which it intends to achieve by September 2019.

Back in 2013, a group of environmental activists held a meeting to discuss the disadvantages of single use plastic bags.

The Turks and Caicos Environmental Club presented startling research conducted over a prolonged period which showed the threat single-use plastics pose to the TCI’s marine life.

Millions of single-use plastic bags, many of which end up polluting the precious coastal and marine environments, are used and discarded annually in the TCI.

For more on this story go to: http://tcweeklynews.com/goodbye-to-single-use-plastic-bags-ban-to-take-effect-from-january-p9105-127.htm


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