Plas­tic bag phase-out sup­ported

Kapiti News - - News -

Coun­cil has voiced its sup­port for a gov­ern­ment pro­posal to en­force a phase-out of sin­gle use plas­tic bags from New Zealand re­tail stores.

“There’s no doubt that plas­tics cause con­sid­er­able harm to our en­vi­ron­ment, clog­ging our drains, chok­ing marine life and leach­ing toxic chem­i­cals into the soil,” Ka¯ piti mayor K Gu­runathan said.

“The ban will re­duce the con­sump­tion, dis­posal and en­vi­ron­men­tal bur­den of plas­tics, and is an im­por­tant step to­wards min­imis­ing plas­tic waste in New Zealand.”

He said coun­cil’s sub­mis­sion, which re­sponds to Gov­ern­ment calls for feed­back on the pro­posal, also made some rec­om­men­da­tions about how to help con­sumers and re­tail­ers with the tran­si­tion to re­us­able bags. “While we sup­port the phase-out, we also recog­nise that peo­ple have be­come some­what re­liant on sin­gle use plas­tics for many types of pack­ag­ing.

“Our sub­mis­sion sup­ported the op­tion for a six month phase­out pe­riod, to al­low time to adapt, and also en­cour­aged the Gov­ern­ment to un­der­take re­search into the po­ten­tial chal­lenges for con­sumers and re­tail­ers mak­ing the tran­si­tion.

“We rec­om­mended that the gov­ern­ment look at whether the cost of re­us­able pack­ag­ing could be a bar­rier, and urged them to pro­vide con­sumers with more in­for­ma­tion on the dif­fer­ent al­ter­na­tives avail­able.”

Mr Gu­runathan said the peo­ple of Ka¯ piti have a strong con­nec­tion with the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment and want to keep their parks, beaches, sanc­tu­ar­ies and wa­ter­ways free from pol­lu­tion. “Waste min­imi­sa­tion is a pri­or­ity for the coun­cil, and we’re proud to sup­port a fu­ture free of sin­gle-use plas­tic bags.”

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