The Green Party’s Waste Minimisation (Single-use Plastic Bag) Amendment Bill, launched this morning, will reduce plastic bag waste, and support organisations cleaning up our environment.
A 15 cent charge will be placed on single-use plastic bags at check-out, and proceeds raised will go back towards support for non-profit organisations doing waste minimisation projects or education.
“New Zealanders use 1.6 billion single-use plastic bags a year despite the growing numbers of people who refuse them at the check-out,” said Green Party waste spokesperson Denise Roche.
“Plastic bags in the marine environment contribute to an estimated 100,000 marine mammal deaths per year. Animals can become entangled in them, and some eat them and choke. Plastic bags also break down into small fragments, which find their way into the food chain when fish swallow them.
“Consumers paying a small charge on single-use plastic bags has been very effective in the UK, where it has reduced plastic bag usage by 85 percent since it was introduced late last year, and raised nearly £30 million for charity.”