Marking a major pivot away from single-use plastics, the NSW Government’s ban on lightweight plastic bags will come into force next week.
The lightweight plastic bag ban is the first of many plastic items being banned in NSW this year and comes into place from 1st June.
The NSW Government passed the Plastic Reduction and Circular Economy Act 2021 in November, and introduced the Plastics Action Plan last year. The ban will prevent almost 2.7 billion items of plastic litter from entering the environment in NSW over the next 20 years.
In addition to the 1st June lightweight plastic bag ban, from November the NSW Government is banning:
single-use plastic straws, stirrers, cutlery,plates, bowls and cotton buds
expanded polystyrene food ware andcups rinse-off personal care productscontaining plastic microbeads.
So-called “compostable” and “bioplastic” alternatives to the above items are also being banned. That’s because they don’t biodegrade unless they’re treated in an industrial composting facility, creating just as much of a problem as conventional plastic.
To ensure small businesses are ready for the changes this year, the NSW Government engaged the National Retail Association (NRA) to deliver a comprehensive retailer education campaign.
Minister for Small Business Eleni Petinos said the NSW Government is supporting more than 40,000 businesses across NSW to phase-out single-use plastics.
“Through the NRA, we’re running a retailer education campaign, conducting store visits, and providing online webinars and resources to help businesses make the adjustment away from single-use plastics.” Ms Petinos said.
The NRA has launched a free hotline (1800 844 946) to offer businesses, community organisations and consumers advice on the single-use plastic bans. For more information about the NSW plastics ban, visit www.dpie.nsw.gov.au/plastics-ban