Bali is the latest region to make considerable legislative changes to reduce marine plastic pollution. The ban announced on 21 December 2018, includes single-use plastic bags, styrofoam and plastic straws and hopes to reduce plastic marine debris by 70 percent within a year.
Bali Governor Wayan Koster is focusing on source reduction while encouraging sustainable alternatives. The government has stated that businesses who do not follow the new laws will incur strict penalties. “If they disobey, we will take action, like not extending their business permit,” Koster said.
It’s clear that Indonesian residents are in support of the new legislation, with 90 percent of Jakarta’s residents agreeing to reduce their use of plastics when surveyed by Indonesia Plastic Bags Diet Movement on the issue last year.
Governor Koster has previously highlighted the importance of education in reducing plastic consumption, which Take 3 agrees is a key element in creating lasting, societal change. At the 2017 World Ocean Summit, Koster stated that through education, “We can inform the public about the negative effects it has [on] our environment, especially our oceans.”
The plastic pollution crisis is extreme in Indonesia. Plastic items are suffocating the beaches, rivers and oceans while releasing harmful toxins into the fragile ecosystem at an alarming rate. A direct impact from plastic marine debris was outlined in scientific studies recently that found plastics have entered the human food chain.
The laws announced in Bali are vital in reducing plastic pollution globally. Take 3 supports legislative actions to ban problem single-use plastic items and wishes to see many more countries taking these steps. For now, congratulations on leading the way to cleaner oceans and a sustainable future, Bali!
Image: Kate Nelson @plasticfreemermaid