A plastic ban has become a more important issue as people are boycotting plastic use.
Mexico City’s latest ban on plastic bags has motivated and helped in a journey to save the environment.
Watch to learn more about it below!
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The city’s government has banned single-use plastic bags to support worldwide efforts to protect the environment, sparking protests from companies that produce them.
“We have to take plastic out of circulation,” said Andree Lilian Guigue, the official overseeing the ban in Mexico City, one of the world’s biggest metropolises. “Plastic and other waste products that damage the planet end up in the ravines, woods and public spaces of the city – and nobody cleans it up.”
The ban that started Jan. 1 stops the sale or distribution of the bags everywhere from Walmart to corner shops.
According to the Plastics industry association, AIPAC says the roughly 20 million people who live in Mexico City and its sprawl use about 68,000 tons of bags a year. Fines for plastic offenders could range from 42,000 pesos ($2,219) to 170,000 pesos.
Gabriel Sanchez, who hawks produce at a marketplace, said the ban was a return to 1960’s packaging.
“Now we’re going back to paper bags, sacks, baskets,” he said. “I think it will take a while but people will get used to it.”
According to plastic producers, the plan will harm an industry that is struggling to adjust to a patchwork of reforms across Mexico and are lobbying lawmakers to enact a federal law that would introduce rules and allow reusable, thicker bags.
“The solution should be regulating bags, not prohibiting them,” said Vladimir Torres, president of AIPAC, which registers 141 plastic bag producers in Mexico City.
The industry makes about $30 billion a year nationwide, but it shrunk in 2019, due to plastic bans in various cities.
Mexico City thinks composable bags could be the solution, which easily breaks down.
But Jose del Cueto, spokesman of Inboplast, an association of companies that make more environmentally-friendly bags, says that would need expensive imported materials.
He wants to follow California, which banned single-use bags in 2014 but allows multiple-use plastic bags.
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