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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Anti Plastic-Bag Campaign

More and more shopping centers and supermarkets in Chengdu, capital city of southwest China's Sichuan province, are advocating environmentally-friendly shopping practices. Xinhua News Agency reported, some sellers in Chengdu sold customers reusable cloth shopping bags while others in the city provided no plastic bags at all.

When you actually do the math, the numbers are quite surprising. Every day in China, around 3 billion plastic bags are put into circulation. As such, every year this country has to use up 37 million barrels of oil to produce the plastic bags that we often take for granted.

As such, the China's State Council has announced that it's putting in restrictions on plastic bags as of June 08. From that point, shops, supermarkets and sales outlets won't be allowed to offer free plastic bags, and every carrier has to be marked with a price. In addition, the government is banning the production of thin bags that are less than 0.025 millimeters.

Plastic bags will cost shoppers money as of June 1, and the bags will be subject to stricter production standards as well. Under the draft standards, published on the central government's web site (www.gov.cn) recently, the thickness of plastic bags for shoppers should be at least 0.025 mm, without bubbles or perforation. Also, bags should have tips to remind consumers to re-use them for the sake of environmental protection and energy conservation. Supermarkets giving free bags will face a maximum penalty of 30,000 yuan (4,000 U.S. dollars), under a related regulation from the Ministry of Commerce.


A Toronto city councillor and new chairman of Toronto's public works and infrastructure committee, Glenn De Baeremaeker has recently taken issue with plastic bags and promises to take action. He said this has to change, and is proposing to reduce the number of bags by 90 per cent.


In India, as part of its cleanliness and environment awareness drive, officials of the Rajkot Municipal Corporation seized 20 kg of prohibited polyethylene bags from four different vegetable markets of the city.

Also in Kerala India, this city banned all plastic bags (as well as bottles and cups) that are less than a certain thickness of fibre.


There was a group of nearly 2000 kids in Kingston, Ontario who signed a petition to their local government, encouraging them to ban plastic bags in all grocery stores in Kingston.


The two largest cities in the state of Maryland - both Baltimore and Annapolis - are considering enacting bans on plastic bags. So now we’ve pretty much covered every corner of the country with potential bans.


Australians support a ban on plastic bags. Currently there is legislation in place to phase them out in the near future but apparently that’s not soon enough. Australia seems to be light years ahead of most other Western nations in their fight to combat plastic bags.

Peregian, a town on the Sunshine Coast of Australia, is a plastic-bag-free town. It follows the path of a number of other Australian communities (the first of which was Coles Bay, Tasmania) that have banned plastic bags.


From an article in the Daily Nation (Kenya’s newspaper), Nobel laureate Wangari Maathai talks about how e-waste is a growing challenge in developing nations, especially those which lack the infrastructure to manage the e-waste. She’s the one who helped lead the charge to ban plastic bags in Kenya.


Uganda decided to ban plastic bags. But this wasn’t the first time that Africa has lapped North America on this issue. Earlier this year, a sizeable portion of Tanzania went plastic bag-free, and a number of other countries over the years have taken decisive action, be it bans or taxes.


Hong Kong and their monthly “No Plastic Bag Day” campaign has been extended into this year. It was so successful that they feel it’s worthwhile to continue with it.


In New Zealand, the checkout clerks at the chain of supermarkets called "Progressive" was meant to ask all customers purchasing less than three items if they really need a plastic bag.



Paris had initially planned to ban non-biodegradable plastics as of 2010

Ireland imposes a tax to consumers on every plastic bag that they use.

Denmark charges a tax to plastic-bag-wrapping retailers,

Switzerland requires supermarkets to charge for bags used.

In Wales, plastic bags will be banned in Welsh supermarkets

In Scotland, Mike Pringle, Lib Dem MSP for Edinburgh South, had put forward a Plastic Bag Levy Bill which would see supermarkets and other retailers providing plastic bags charging a small fee for every carrier customers required, in an effort to encourage consumers to use their own bags.


In Indonesia, we just starting an action. In Bandung city, Feb 4, a campaign called "Anti Plastic Bag Campaign" was launched. This action organized by the university student of Bandung Technology Institute (ITB). They asked people to bring a special non-plastic own bag everytime they shop.


Well..., We have only one precious world.
So, why don't you make this world to become a better place for all of us? Please Open your heart widely and be part of this movements!!

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