ACT Govt. tables draft Draft plastic reduction Bill

The ACT Government has tabled its draft Plastic Reduction Bill 2020 in the Legislative Assembly as a prelude to phasing out certain single-use plastics.

Beginning from July 2021, the sale and supply of single-use plastic cutlery, stirrers and polystyrene food and beverage containers such as plates, cups, bowls, and “clamshell” takeaway containers will be banned in Canberra.

Minister for Recycling and Waste Reduction Chris Steel said the transition period recognised that affected sectors like the events and hospitality industries are currently in hibernation during the pandemic and may need to use up any existing stock that they have.

“The release of the exposure Bill is a clear signal that the transition to better alternatives begins now,” Mr Steel said.

“And we will continue to work with stakeholders on the ACT Plastic Reduction Taskforce as we implement the phase-out, with the final Bill introduced before the end of the year.”

He said the Bill would also see the ACT become the first jurisdiction to declare public events single-use plastic free, with a focus on designated large-scale events, and in close consultation with event-holders.

In 2022, the Government will seek to expand the phase out to include items such as plastic fruit and vegetable barrier bags and oxo-degradable plastic products which are conventional plastics that include additives to accelerate the fragmentation of the material.

After a public comment period, the legislation is expected to be introduced towards the end of the year.

In related news, the ACT City Renewal Authority released a “best-practice approach” to placemaking.

Developed with the assistance of Canberra landscape architects and placemaking specialists the Tait Network, the Great Place Guide explains “what placemaking is, why it’s important, and how to do it”.