Our retailers’ voluntary code to reduce the use of plastic bags has ended. According to a study of Sydney retailers Total Environment Centre despite four years of government and industry promises to reduce the use of plastic bags:
A total ban on plastic bags in Uganda took place on Sunday. Under the new rules, companies are forbidden from producing, importing or using plastic bags. But it is unlikely individuals will be punished for using existing ones. And the government has launched an campaign for Ugandans to go back to using banana leaves to carry stuff.
Light plastic bags were banned in Kenya, while a 120 per cent excise duty was put on sturdier, polythene bags.
Plastic bags were banned in chain supermarkets in Oakland, USA. But the ban doesn’t apply to fast food chains or restaurants.
Also on Sunday a law took effect in California mandating that grocery and general merchandise stores provide customers with a way to recycle their plastic bags. The Total Environment Centre recommends we enact such a law.
On March 27 this year, the City and County of San Francisco became the first city in the US to ban plastic shopping bags. Orange County, the City of Santa Monica, Portland and now the entire State of California are all considering following suit.