South Korea has launched a ban on disposable plastic bags, as part of its efforts to protect environment by reducing the use of non-biodegradable waste.
The country has taken the decision due to plastic waste handling crisis resulted after China imposed a ban on the import of plastic garbage.
As part of the ban, discount stores, supermarkets and bakeries across the country must avoid the use of disposable plastic bags.
Around 2,000 discount chain outlets and 11,000 supermarkets are expected to be suffered from the ban. The firms violating the rules will be fined up to KRW3m ($2,680).
Shops and outlets need to offer paper bags, multiple-use cloth shopping bags or recyclable containers to the customers. These solutions will be supplied by the local government authorities to gather money for waste disposal.
The government will allow shops to use thin plastic bags for wet food packaging, including fish and meat. Customers will be charged for the plastic bags used by them.
Recently, the UK Government also announced plans to reduce the use of single-use plastics in schools across the country by 2022.
As part of this initiative, UK Education Secretary Damian Hinds has urged headteachers in England to replace non-recyclable plastic items such as straws, bottles, bags and food packaging through sustainable alternatives, reported The Guardian.
The government, as part of its 25-year environmental plan, also announced its commitment to eliminate avoidable plastic waste by 2042. It also introduced tax on any plastic packaging without at least 30% recycled content.
The UK Government also announced plans to extend the 5p plastic bag charge to all retailers and increase to 10p to further reduce their use.
The move follows the success of the 5p charge introduced in 2015, which helped to drop the sales of single use plastic bags in major supermarkets by 86%.
Recently, New Zealand government also nnounced plans to eliminate the use of single-use plastic shopping bags from 1 July 2019.
The cabinet has approved the proposed regulations for a mandatory nationwide phase out of single-use plastic shopping bags, said New Zealand environment minister Eugenie Sage.