From February 27th, a further nine single-use plastic items will be phased out under Stage 2 of Western Australia’s Plan for Plastics.
Items to come under fire this time around are:
- non-compostable plastic takeaway coffee cups
- plastic produce bags
- cotton buds with plastic stems
- expanded polystyrene packaging
- expanded polystyrene cups
- degradable plastics
- unlidded trays
- and lids for takeaway bowls, plates, cups, trays, and containers.
October 2021 saw Stage 1 begin with the phase-out of plastic plates, bowls, cups, cutlery, stirrers, straws, thick plastic bags, helium balloons, and polystyrene food containers. Stage 1 of Plan for Plastics already saves 430 million single-use plastics from litter and landfill in WA every year. It’s proposed that Stage 2 will save a further 700 million items annually.
“We can be proud our State continues to lead the way in tackling single-use plastics. Western Australians have truly embraced our Plan for Plastics, and this is another positive step in reducing our impact on the environment,” Environment Minister Reece Whitby said.
February 27th signals the start of the ‘transition periods’ of Plan for Plastics, which allows businesses to use up their current supplies and source alternatives before the bans are enforced. Enforcement will start on September 1st, 2023, for some of the banned items and others over 6 to 28 months.
Under the new ban, retailers and suppliers not making any plans to transition or deliberately continuing to supply the banned items could face fines of up to $5,000.00 for individuals or up to $25,000.00 for businesses.
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Lead image: Ross Varrette