Cyprus Mail

Year after introducing charge plastic bag use drops 80 per cent

One year after the handing out of free plastic bags in shops was banned the use of them has dropped by 80 per cent, the department of the environment announced on Monday.

A complete ban on plastic carrier bags might be the next step, environment officer at the department Elena Christodoulidou said.

On July 1, 2018 the regulations for reducing the use of the bags were adopted, which had been approved by the House in 2017.

Supermarkets and other points of sale have charged up to six cents for the bags since then.

“The implementation of this measure saw a significant reduction in the use of thin plastic carrier bags as the public readily accepted this measure and responded positively. There has been a reduction in use of about 80 per cent compared to before the implementation,” Christodoulidou said.

Future measures include reducing the impact of other harmful plastic products, such as straws, food containers and cotton buds in line with a new European directive.

“At present, we are working on transposing the directive into Cypriot law,” she explained.

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