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Wed 21 Oct 2009 07:31 AM

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Plastic bags set to be banned in UAE from 2013

Plastic bag ban could be extended to bottles, food packaging, in bid to protect environment.

UAE environmental officials have announced a plan to ban all plastic carrier bags by 2013 in a bid to reduce the amount of waste the country produces.

Some two billion plastic bags were made in the UAE last year, Gulf News reports, many of which are not reused and end up in landfill sites.

By 2013, the Ministry of Environment and Water (MOEW) said it wants all residents to use alternatives like cotton or biodegradable plastic bags instead

The ministry is also looking to extend the ban once it comes into effect to other plastic products, like drink bottles and food packaging, Mariam Al Shenasi, executive director for technical affairs at the ministry, told the paper.

She told the paper there was "no way they [plastic bags] will be allowed” after 2013. She was speaking at the launch of the ministry’s three-year awareness campaign to highlight the damage plastic bags cause to the environment.

The production and disposal of plastic adds to CO2 emissions, and the dumping of them contributes to pollution problems, as well as threatens wildlife.

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WOLF 10 years ago

WHY NOT NOW??? IMMEDIATELY!!!!!!!!!!!

Christian 10 years ago

Don,t wait go for iit thats what is possible in Dubai. The Champion of ADHOC rules anyway use it for the good now! the remainder of bags mandatory biodegradable they are ther i use them already for 4 Years.

langyaw 10 years ago

when a law is passed that results to a manufacturing sector being shut down (read that as LOSS!), wisdom, on the part of the lawmaker, would require him to assess how long it will require for the affected manufacturer to close down with the minimal financial injury (both for the manufacturer and the government). this means asking how long it will take for the inventory to be consumed, among others. IMHO, I don't think inventories of plastic containers and wrappers are *that* much. I think mid- to late 2010 is doable. -- langyaw

Jon 10 years ago

All a bit of a joke really when you think UAE has second highest per capita CO2 footprint globally. Mass populations centres in areas where there are not enough natural resources (i.e. the desert) will always be an environmental disaster. When you consider the CO2 emissions from the electricity and desal plants, a few plastic bags will not make any difference...

Christian 10 years ago

Tell that to the hunderd of camels who are dying a slow dead of starvation because they eat the bags in teh desert.

C.Ann 10 years ago

Although I am happy to hear that plans are being made to ban plastic bags, 3 years from now is too far off. I believe shops can adjust to a sooner date than this. The supermarket Carrefour uses thin, plain white plastic bags now and that's an improvement. However, other shops and supermarkets use thick plastic bags with heavy print. The UAE may follow the example of other countries, who either charge a small amount for the use of a plastic bag in order to encourage others to bring their own shopping bag. On the same note, plastic water bottles can be modified as well and manufactured using a thinner layer of plastic, with shorter lids.

Manoj Menon 9 years ago

It is a very good move by the govt. of UAE. I personely feel that the ban of the plastic shopping bags will save our EARTH and by stoping the plastic bags will give an extra milage to the coming generation. We should do some thing for our children and grand children. Let other GCC countries also follow this idea to save our globe. I am in Oman and i wish to listen a news like this from oman also. Oman is good country and being in this country i will stop using plastic bags to protect the nature.

Robert R 6 years ago

It is 2014 and the malls, beaches, and deserts of the UAE are still littered with plastic bags. When I go shopping they give me plastic bags for my plastic bags. I try to say no but the store workers seem to have been told to put everything in bags. I bought a reusable bag for the grocery store but I hardly see anyone else use one. I'm sadly certain that, unless actual law is past, enforced, and the public is educated, another 2 billion plastic bags will go into the environment and clog the bellies of camels once again in 2014.