Victoria to ban single-use plastic bags

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The Victorian Government will ban single-use, lightweight plastic shopping bags, after it first consults with businesses and the community on how best to implement the policy.

Experience in other jurisdictions shows that banning lightweight plastics ban can lead to undesirable results, including increased use of heavier duty plastics, which can have an even greater environmental impact.

That is why the Labor Government will work with the community on how to best manage plastic pollution, and deliver a workable scheme that doesn’t unfairly impact on consumers, retailers, industry or the environment.

Plastics in the environment break up into smaller and smaller pieces over time, becoming increasingly difficult to manage. They can end up in our waterways, lakes and oceans — contributing to litter and posing a significant hazard to our marine life.

Reducing the number of plastic bags we use is an important part of addressing the overall impacts of plastic pollution in Victoria.

The 2015/16 Keep Australia Beautiful National Litter Index reported that Victoria has the lowest litter count in the country for the fifth year in a row.

The Victorian Budget 2017/18 builds on this success, providing $30.4 million over four years in new funding to improve the ways we manage waste and recover resources.

“Banning single-use plastic bags will slash waste, reduce litter and help protect marine life in Victoria’s pristine waters,” said Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio.

“We will work closely with Victorian communities and businesses to design the ban, we’re proud that we’re doing our bit to reduce the impact plastic bags have on our environment.”