This piece of news caught me off guard, I had no idea that they were even considering such a measure. The ban will come into effect on 1 June 2008 and not only does it forbid the use of plastic bags in stores, but it also forbids the production of the bags. I have no idea whether the ban will impact bags made for export, I hope it does.
China uses too many of the bags and fails to dispose of them properly, wasting valuable oil and littering the country, China’s cabinet, the State Council, said in a notice.
“Our country consumes huge amounts of plastic bags every year. While providing convenience to consumers, they have also caused serious pollution, and waste of energy and resources, because of excessive use and inadequate recycling,” it said.
Worries about pollution are growing among ordinary citizens, as years of breakneck growth take their toll on the country’s air and water, but the new ban may not be universally welcomed.
Late last year the southern boom town of Shenzhen sparked a public controversy by unveiling draft regulations to ban free plastic bags in its shops.