Local environmental group calls for plastic bag charge to reduce usage [News]

September 21, 2016 by  
Filed under News

By Lim Jia Qi, Channel NewsAsia, 21 Sep 2016

As plastic bag charges have proved to be a success in countries such as the United Kingdom and Hong Kong, local environmental group Zero Waste SG is calling for the Government to impose a levy on the use of plastic bags, with major supermarket chains and retailers taking the lead.

The non-governmental organisation made the call in their recommendation paper which was released on Monday (Sep 12). Singapore uses about 2.5 billion plastic bags a year and efforts by the Government to reduce plastic bags consumption have so far been limited, said Mr Eugene Tay, executive director of Zero Waste SG.

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Source credit: Channel NewsAsia

Recommendation Paper on the Implementation of a Plastic Bag Charge in Singapore

September 12, 2016 by  
Filed under Insights

Recommendation Paper on the Implementation of a Plastic Bag Charge in SingaporeIn June 2016, we published our Position Paper on the Reduction of Single-Use Plastic Disposables in Singapore, to urge the government and businesses to develop concrete plans and take bold actions to reduce the consumption of single-use plastic disposables.

As a follow-up to our Position Paper and to focus specifically on the problem of excessive usage and wastage of single-use plastic bags in Singapore, Zero Waste SG recently conducted a public survey on a plastic bag charge. The survey would help us to understand the opinion of supermarket shoppers on a charge for plastic bags and whether they are ready for a plastic bag charge in the future.

This recommendation paper shows the results of the survey and recommends that the government introduce a mandatory plastic bag charge scheme to reduce the excessive usage and wastage of single-use plastic bags and to encourage people to bring their own reusable bags.

Download Recommendation Paper on the Implementation of a Plastic Bag Charge in Singapore (2375 downloads )

More shoppers bringing their own bags for grocery shopping [News]

August 23, 2013 by  
Filed under News

By Channel NewsAsia, 22 Aug 2013.

Results of a recent survey commissioned by NTUC FairPrice has found that more customers are bringing their own bags when grocery shopping.

As many as 62 per cent indicated that they have brought their own bags at least once compared to 33 per cent two years ago.

Thirty-six per cent said that they do so regularly, while 13 per cent shared that they do it all the time.

Eighty per cent of people who brought their own bags do so to be environmentally friendly and found it convenient to use only one bag for groceries.

The survey involved 536 customers.

A typical Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) customer profile also seems to be more likely to be female and most are aged between 35 and 54 years old.

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Source: Channel NewsAsia

Phase out plastic bags [Letters]

October 3, 2011 by  
Filed under News

Letter by Curtis Marsh, The Straits Times, 3 Oct 2011.

Human nature being what it is, people will not change their bad habits easily (“New council rolls up sleeves for dirty job”; last Wednesday).

The Government must intervene more and eliminate some of the root causes of littering.

One immediate measure could be phasing out plastic bags and introducing a law that bans the use of plastic bags.

You only have to stand in the supermarket aisles to notice the bewildering number of plastic bags that are used up every minute. Yet the solution is so simple: use reusable bags.

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Avoid Disposable Items

December 8, 2008 by  
Filed under Reduce

Disposable items such as plastic bags, plastic cutlery and batteries are thrown away after a single use. This is a waste of resources and creates unnecessary wastage. We should try to avoid buying and using disposable items if possible.

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) to Reduce the Use of Plastic Bags
  2. Avoid Disposable Plastic Containers and Cutlery
  3. Avoid Using Individually Packaged Disposable Items
  4. Use Rechargeable Batteries Instead of Normal Single-Use Batteries
  5. Skip Gift Wrapping

1. Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) to Reduce the Use of Plastic Bags

In Singapore, we use about 3 billion plastic bags a year. Plastic bags are commonly used to bag our waste for disposal. However, excess plastic bags are thrown away as waste and are also often thrown away as litter, dirtying our streets and clogging up the drains.

Plastic bags that end up in the sea may also pose a threat to marine lives. In addition, plastic bags are made from oil, thus using up this non-renewable resource.

Support the Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) campaign and bring your own reusable bags for shopping and help to reduce the need for excessive plastic bags. Avoid taking excessive plastic bags and if you have excess plastic bags, consider reusing them for bagging refuse or giving them to others.

2. Avoid Disposable Plastic Containers and Cutlery

Make an effort to have your food at the food outlets or restaurants, and avoid takeaways using disposable plastic containers. If you often need to buy food back to your home or office, consider bringing your own reusable container, cutlery and bag instead of taking the disposable ones.

In addition, you can bring your own reusable cutlery to avoid using disposable cutlery when eating at food outlets and restaurants.

If you are organising an event, use non-disposable plates, cups and cutlery for your catered food. Ask the caterer to use chinaware or glassware instead. This helps to reduce the amount of waste from paper or plastic disposables.

3. Avoid Using Individually Packaged Disposable Items

When serving hot beverages, avoid the use of disposable stirrers and individually packaged sugar, milk and creamer. Use a spoon for stirring and place the sugar and milk in reusable containers or jugs.

Avoid using individual sachets of chilli or ketchup sauce. Store the sauce in reusable bottles and dispensers instead.

Avoid disposable bottled water or plastic cups in your office or event. You can switch to reusable water bottles and reusable plastic, ceramic or glass cups for water.

4. Use Rechargeable Batteries Instead of Normal Single-Use Batteries

Rechargeable AA and AAA batteries can be reused many times and this will help to reduce the disposal of normal single-use batteries. If 5% of the local population switched to rechargeable batteries, this would prevent the annual disposal of more one million single-use batteries (assuming each person throws away five batteries a year).

Switching to rechargeable batteries also helps to save money. A pack of four AA alkaline batteries costs about $5 and can be used once, whereas a pack of four rechargeable batteries and a charger costs about $50, and the batteries can be reused about 500 to 1,000 times. If you switch to rechargeable batteries and reuse them 10 times, the purchase cost between normal and rechargeable batteries would breakeven.

5. Skip Gift Wrapping

Consider skipping gift wrapping and put the gift in a reusable bag instead. Excessive paper wrappers are a hassle and usually end up as waste. What is inside is more important.