Oxo-biodegradable bags stamped as degradable not permissible in SRO: MoCC

ISLAMABAD, Oct 8 (APP):The federal capital after the ban imposed on plastic bags has embraced Oxo-biodegradable and polythene bags being stamped as degradable bag.

Ministry of Climate Change (MoCC) official talking to APP has categorically denied those bags’ use as permissible. He said under the revised Statutory Regulatory Order (SRO) plastic commonly known as polythene bags, Oxo-biodegradable single time use bags have been banned.

The ministry was cognizant of the situation and had started working out a plan to block the supply of these bags to the markets in the federal capital, he added.

MoCC would also start strict action against plastic bags ban violators in the federal capital. He said at present there was 95 percent compliance of the ban in the federal capital.

Meanwhile, the MoCC official mentioned that in some far-off areas and Sabzi Mandi I-11 violation had been reported.

“We have held discussions with the Sabzi Mandi representatives to comply with the ban imposed on plastic bags and use nylon bags for vegetables and fruits packaging,” he added.

After the deliberations, he said the fruits and vegetables market officials had failed to comply where the ministry would take action as per law.

“It is the matter of behavioural change more than embracing any legislation which will take time to make people adhere to the ban imposed on single use plastic bags,” he noted.

He added that ministry took the start with simple advocacy and awareness of public during the inspection visits, however, it was now time to fine violators under the legislation imposed to curb plastic bags use.

However, Member of National Assembly Shahida Rehmani told the National Assembly Standing Committee on Climate Change that degradable stamped bags had been available in the Parliament House’s cafeteria which was astounding. She added that it was supposed to have a plastic free parliament secretariat after the ban on plastic bags.

Director General Environmental Protection Agency Farzana Altaf Shah told the members of the committee that it was Oxo-biodegradable bag which was repealed under the revised SRO, however, no one would be allowed to violate the law and action would be initiated as per law.

Adviser to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam had maintained that no citizen had been penalized under the ban, however, by the next week the inspection teams of the ministry would start putting a fine on the violators caught red handed.

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