Published: Mon, January 20, 2020
Markets | By Otis Pena

China plans various bans on use of plastic

China plans various bans on use of plastic

For example, according to the document, the catering industry will be banned from using single-use plastic cutlery in major cities by the end of 2020, while non-degradable plastic straws will be unavailable nationwide.

This past weekend, China's National Development and Reform Commission issued a new policy that will phase out single-use plastics over the next five years.

Although China is aggressively opposed to single-use plastics, plastic pollution remains a problem worldwide.

This is not the first time that China has announced a comprehensive anti-plastic campaign. If improperly disposed of, biodegradable plastics can damage the environment. "Replacing nonbiodegradable plastics with biodegradable ones may cause misuse and a new type of pollution, as well as increased pressure on waste-recycling systems".

The country will progressively ban or restrict the production, sales and use of certain plastics while endorsing "degradable, recycle-friendly alternatives", according to a document published by the Commission. Packaging accounts for more than a third of current plastics consumption.

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According to a United Nations report, around 300 million tonnes of plastic waste is generated each year, 60% of which has been disposed of either in landfills or in nature.

By 2022, some delivery services in major cities including Beijing and Shanghai will be forbidden from using non-degradable packaging, with the ban extended to the whole country by 2025.

A major plan has been revealed to decrease single-use plastics across China which considered one of the world's biggest users of plastic.

China has already had a scrap ban in place since the start of 2018 and only imported 10,000 tonnes of polyolefin scrap that year and in 2019. France banned the use of plastic plates, cups, and cotton buds starting January 1 with the goal of phasing out all single-use items by 2040.

"Plastics have a close connection to chemical pollutants", Mao said.

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