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12/26/2018 9:48:02 AM

Bali bans single-use plastics, aims to cut marine plastics by 70%

Indonesia's holiday island Bali has enacted a ban on single-use plastics such as shopping bags, styrofoam and straws in efforts to curb pollution in its waters, according to a report by the Jakarta Post on Tuesday (Dec 25).

This photo taken on December 19, 2017 shows rubbish collectors clearing trash on Kuta beach near Denpasar, on Indonesia's tourist island of Bali. (Photo: AFP/Sonny Tumbelaka)

The new policy aims for a 70 per cent reduction in Bali's marine plastics by 2019, announced Bali governor Wayan Koster a day earlier.

“This policy is aimed at producers, distributors, suppliers and business actors, including individuals, to suppress the use of single-use plastics," said Koster.

"They must substitute plastics with other materials."

The policy, which has a six-month grace period, took effect last Friday, the Post added.

Those who do not comply with the ban will be penalised with administrative sanctions, said Koster.

Tourists and local residents disembark a boat coming from nearby Nusa Penida island as

Tourists and local residents disembark a boat coming from nearby Nusa Penida island as plastic trash pollutes the beach in Sanur, Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia April 10, 2018. REUTERS/Johannes P. Christo/Files

"If they disobey, we will take action, like not extending their business permit," he was quoted as saying.

Experts have estimated that 80 per cent of the trash on Bali's beaches originated from the island itself, the Jakarta Post said.

Trash from hotels and villages is often dumped in rivers, which end up on the resort island's beaches due to coastal tides and currents.

Indonesia last year launched a national action plan, pledging up to USD1 billion to cut ocean waste by 70 per cent by 2025.

National or local governments in more than 40 countries around the world have imposed bans on single-use plastic bags, including the Philippines, Malaysia, India and China./.

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