Home About Contact FAQ Search Submit
NO EXCUSES LEFT: A NATIONAL PLASTIC BAG BAN A MUST

No excuses left: a national plastic bag ban a must

Media Release - 3 May 2009

There are no excuses left for state and federal government environment ministers to oppose a national plastic bag ban as South Australia prepares to rid itself of them from tomorrow, Clean Up Australia said.

The introduction of a national ban will be on the agenda when environment ministers discuss a ban at the Environment Protection and Heritage Council  meeting on May 22 in Hobart.

Clean Up Australia Chairman Ian Kiernan AO said it’s time for ministers to act in the interests of both the environment and the community and introduce a national ban.

“Governments have run out of excuses to avoid a ban on plastic shopping bags. More than four years of talk must now end and action take place,” Mr Kiernan said.

“South Australia’s ban and also major retailer Target’s ban are further evidence of the direction the nation must take. A ban, not a levy, is the most effective way of dealing with the low rates of recycling of plastic bags and the huge numbers that get dumped in the environment.”

Mr Kiernan said a levy on plastic bags would fail to bring about any long term benefits and would simply be a tax on consumers.

“In Ireland, a levy has failed to stop people simply getting used to paying for plastic bags and using them as they were before. These tough financial times are hardly the moment to introduce a new tax.

“A further delay in introducing a national ban on plastic shopping bags would cost the environment dearly. Almost four billion bags are being handed out each year in Australia. A large proportion of these end up in either landfill or choking our waterways and marine life.”

Only a third of plastic bags are recycled and the rest end up either rubbishing the environment or in landfill. To produce the 3.76 billion plastic bags that Australians use each year, 784,000 barrels of oil are burnt, adding to damaging greenhouse gas emissions.

“It would be environmentally negligent to allow the damage plastic bags cause to continue” Mr Kiernan said.

Media enquiries: Paul Sheridan 0410 516 656

 
Web hosting by Anchor         HOME ABOUT CONTACT FAQ PRIVACY SITEMAP CLEAN UP THE WORLD