NSW Greens MP Justin Field has today introduced ambitious laws in State Parliament aimed at phasing out all single-use plastics in NSW by the end of 2023.
The most commonly littered single-use plastic items, including bags, straws, stirrers, balloons, confection sticks, microbeads, and polystyrene food containers would be banned by the end of 2018 under the laws.
The Waste Avoidance and Resource Recovery Amendment (Marine Plastics Reduction) Bill 2018 sets a new benchmark for action to deal with plastic pollution and recognises the best response to single-use plastics is to regulate them out of use.
The Bill introduces explicit ‘marine plastics elimination targets’ to drive urgent action including:
- To reduce plastic waste entering the marine environment by 90% by 2020; and
- For all packaging used in NSW to be either recyclable, compostable or reusable by the end of 2023.
Mr Field said the build-up of plastic in our environment was at unprecedented and growing levels, with scientists predicting there will be more plastic than fish in the sea by 2050.
“The Bill introduced in NSW Parliament today recognises we need urgent action to reduce the large amount of human-generated plastic in our oceans, rivers and environment,” he said today.
“The Greens have an ambitious, comprehensive plan to phase out petroleum-based single-use plastics and make a real difference when it comes to getting plastic waste out of our marine environment.
“So many individuals and communities are taking personal action to avoid and re-use plastic in their daily life, now it’s time corporates and government played their part too.
“NSW is lagging behind community expectations and significant action from the rest of the world, including the European Union, in the war on reducing plastic pollution. That’s why we need a bold plan for a plastic-free NSW.
“Our vision is for the phasing out of single-use plastics, polystyrene packaging, products containing microbeads and other harmful plastic products. The Greens are putting forward an ambitious but essential plan to address the harm from plastic products and protecting the health of people, communities and our environment.
“We have seen over the ditch in New Zealand and further across the world the change that is possible if leaders listen to their communities and commit to action on plastic pollution. I’m calling on all politicians in NSW to get behind this plan,” Mr Field said.