Minister of Environment Mahinda Amaraweera has issued directives to the Central Environmental Authority to implement the first phase of the decision to ban polythene bags from next January.
According to the programme carried out by the Ministry of Environment to reduce the use of polythene and plastic, it was proposed to ban the use of shopping bags.
The first phase will be implemented from January 2022, and accordingly plans are in place to ban all shopping bags with a width of 10 inches, depth of five inches and height of 16 inches, or less.
The Environment Minister said steps are being taken to introduce substitutes, adding however the ban will be implemented even if there are no alternatives.
It has been revealed that over two billion shopping bags are used annually in Sri Lanka.
The Environment Ministry said according to data collected thus far over 1 billion shopping bags are issued free of charge to consumers, by two companies in the country’s supermarket network.
(Except for the headline, this story, originally published by newsradio.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)