The EU’s Single-Use plastic directive was actioned officially on the 3rd July. An information meeting held by The Chamber of Commerce saw numerous EU representatives and locally-based entities explain both the importance and the challenges which such directive will bring forth.
Oliver Fenech, moderator of the discussion and Manager of PT Matic Environmental Services Ltd – a company that strives towards measures to eliminate hazardous factors from the human environment – said, “Plastic is cheap and mouldable. The problem is the end of its life, which makes it complex to recycle, and some plastic is not even recyclable.”
Because we need this
Waste is a global issue as obvious as the light of day. Most present economies are constantly producing new products from raw materials, creating a mass ‘throwaway culture’ of excess and waste.
Circular economy is a recent term that counteracts this. It promotes a more sustainable future, that aims at reusing and recycling rather than creating – and that is why big governing bodies such as the EU and other countries, are pushing towards a more circular economy.
Change in Malta will be gradual
EU Directive 2019/904 will be a gradual implementation of measures. Currently, as of the 3rd of July, implemented measures include the prohibition of plastic carrier bags and oxo-degradable plastics – meaning plastics that take much longer to break down.
Ongoing measures which are being actioned or will be actioned soon will see a refund scheme for beverage bottles and awareness campaigns.
The timeline goes up to 2022 where several other prohibitions will be implemented such as the altogether removal of other plastic-types used in mass consumption such as pizza lid supporters, plastic toothpicks and lollipop sticks.
Encouraging a shift in how much we consume
Brining on these directives means that now companies and producers will have to bear more costs in order to accommodate such directives, especially in the initial stages.
Giuseppe De Angelis, Senior Officer at Environment & Resources Authority,
was asked during the session whether this waste directive would mean producers shifting their extra costs to consumer price.
De Angelis confirmed that this might be a possibility, but a positive and intended outcome to such a case scenario is that people, in general, ‘will be encouraged ‘to change their consumption patterns.’
Do you carry a reusable shopping bag with you? It just takes tiny efforts to make our living environment a better place to live. Share and encourage others to do the same.