The Jakarta Administration is currently drafting a gubernatorial regulation that will ban single-use plastic bags.
“The most important point is that we want to ban the use of single-use plastics, such as kresek-kresek [plastic grocery bags],” Jakarta Environment Agency head Isnawa Adji said on Wednesday, kompas.com reported.
He said the policy would be made because plastic waste was dangerous and was piling up too much. It decomposed slowly and posed a health threat if it became pollution.
“Plastics are potentially dangerous for human health because they have carcinogens that can cause cancer. This is important because there is a lot of trash in Jakarta, such as in the gutters, roads and sidewalks,” Isnawa said.
He said that Jakartans had already agreed to reduce plastic waste. According to a survey by the Indonesia Plastic Bags Diet Movement (GIDKP), more than 90 percent of the residents of Jakarta agreed to reduce their use of plastics.
He said one of the efforts to reduce plastic use was to limit plastic straws at restaurants, with other places following the example.
He said the agency would initially ask for the opinions of stakeholders and citizens in the months before enacting the ban.
“Perhaps there should be incentives and disincentives for retailers [to reduce plastic use]. That’s what we would try to discuss with retailers. Not that we hate plastics producers -- we want their opinions too. We will discuss it,” Isnawa said.
The customs and excise directorate general of the Finance Ministry is also mulling over a plan to enact an excise tax on plastic bags next year to reduce their use. (ami)