We’ve consistently missed our recycling goals, we don’t keep track of how much we pollute, we ship most of our recycling to already polluted countries and many state-led initiatives fall short of achieving worthwhile change.
One way we’re trying to make a difference is through bringing awareness around the upcoming July 1st plastic bag ban. You may have already seen our posters around town or seen our videos and squares on Facebook. Although it’s great that the WA government is taking positive steps to reduce state-wide plastic usage, their plastic bag ban doesn’t go far enough and here's why:
- It only applies to all retailers in WA for single-use, lightweight polyethylene polymer plastic bags that are less than 35 microns in thickness.
- The ban does not apply to other bags such as barrier bags for fruit and vegetables.
- A study by a Quebec recycling group, Recyc-Quebec found that thicker plastic bags need to be used three to six more times to become more environmentally sustainable than the thin ones, proving that reusable bags are better than any plastic bag
- The state government is not going to issue penalties until 2019. This is so that shops can run their stocks down. All this will do is flood the market and our environment with plastic bags before the thicker ones will start circulating.
We don't believe the ban will effectively solve the issue of plastic pollution, the Government must know that it needs to go further.
Here’s what you can do:
- Ask the government to increase the scope of their plastic bag ban by writing to the Premier (email@example.com) and Environment Minister (Minister.Dawson@dpc.wa.gov.au)
- Speak with your wallet, and refuse any thicker plastic bags that may be offered at supermarkets. Better yet, have a reusable cotton bag ready to go!
- Download this fact sheet for tips on how to start limiting your individual waste.
- Join our campaign by signing up to the mailing list. We’ll keep you informed of any actions, rallies and important parliamentary milestones.