Bali has taken a big step to curb pollution in its waters, enacting a ban on single-use plastics including shopping bags, polystyrene and straws.
Bali governor Wayan Koster announced the ban on Dec 24 and expressed hope that the policy would lead to a 70% decline in Bali’s marine plastics within a year.
The new policy carries a six-month grace period dating from Dec 21, when it was signed and took effect.
“This policy is aimed at producers, distributors, suppliers and business players, including individuals, to suppress the use of single-use plastics.
“They must substitute plastics with other materials,” Koster told reporters.
He added that administrative sanctions would be imposed on those who did not comply with the ban.
It has been difficult to trace the origins of the trash on Bali’s beaches, but experts estimate that up to 80% comes from the island.
The trash that informal workers collect from hotels and villages is often dumped in rivers, which then carry the waste out to sea.
The trash eventually finds its way back to the resort island’s beaches on coastal tides and currents.
Jakarta plans to follow Bali’s example by drafting a similar gubernatorial regulation that bans single-use plastic bags.
— The Jakarta Post