Officials announce significant reduction in plastic bag use in Denpasar

Photo: Coconuts Bali
Photo: Coconuts Bali

An official from the Denpasar Mayor Office said yesterday that the amount of plastic waste in the Balinese capital has seen a significant decrease, with sellers in traditional markets and street shops reportedly having reduced more than half of their plastics use compared to last year. 

Based on a survey conducted between May and June 2018, traditional markets and street shops sellers in Denpasar used more than one million sheets of plastic bags monthly, as reported by state news agency Antara. 

That eventually led to Denpasar Mayor Rai Dharmawijaya Mantra to issue a regulation aimed at reducing plastic bag use in the city on October 2018, which officials says has contributed to a significant decrease in plastic bag use in the capital. 

“We’d hoped it would be effective in reducing plastics waste and the use of plastic bags in Denpasar,” Ida Bagus Putra Wirabawa, a secretary at Denpasar’s Environmental and Cleanliness Agency, told Antara. 

According to Wirabawa, most recent survey showed that traditional markets have reduced their plastic bag use by 54.26%, whereas other shops along the streets of Denpasar have reportedly reduced theirs by 86.27%. He added that this showcased the effectiveness of the 2018 Mayoral Regulation. 

Many shops in Denpasar no longer provide plastic bags for customers to carry goods, instead relying on customers to bring their own shopping bags or providing the more sustainable alternatives, for a price. Earlier in April, Bintang Supermarket on the island switched from using plastic bags to banana leaves to wrap their vegetables. 

Meanwhile, the rest of Bali might see those plastic reductions replicated across the island in the coming months, with the 2018 Governor Regulation, which bans single-use plastic bags, straws and styrofoam, having gone into effect on June 23.

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