Victoria is the latest Australian state to ban single-use plastics. The state will phase out single-use straws, cutlery, plates, stirrers, expanded polystyrene food and drink containers and cotton bud sticks (q-tips) by February 2023.
The ban was announced by Victorian Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio, late last month. It marks the first significant step in the state's long-term plan to tackle plastics waste.
"This is about taking a gradual step towards addressing plastics in our environment," minister D’Ambrosio said.
"We believe that these are the easiest items that have substitutes available right now."
Victoria is the third Australian jurisdiction to announce single-use plastic bans. It follows Queensland, which announced a plan to phase out single-use items by September 2021 earlier this year, and South Australia where bans came into effect on March 1st this year.
Last week, the Australian government also launched the country's first National Plastics Plan. The plan outlines a raft of measures designed to tackle plastic waste including working with industry to ensure that 80 per cent of supermarket products display the Australasian Recycling Label by December 2023.
“We know the problems, we know that there are good ideas out there, but this is the first national strategy, one that attacks the issue from all sides and which sets clear targets over the next decade,” environment minister Sussan Ley said.
Major Australian supermarkets are also moving away from single-use plastics. Late last month, Coles announced it will stop stocking cups, plates, bowls, straws and cutlery by July 1. Woolworths also shared plans to replace single-use plastic tableware with sustainable alternatives in the near future, though it has not yet committed to a specific date.
Positive Environment News has been compiled using publicly available information. Planet Ark does not take responsibility for the accuracy of the original information and encourages readers to check the references before using this information for their own purposes.