Question NW33 to the Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries

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04 July 2019 - NW33

Profile picture: Weber, Ms AMM

Weber, Ms AMM to ask the Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries

Whether she intends to introduce legislation in the National Assembly to ban the use of single-use plastic in the Republic; if not, why not; if so, by what date does she intend to introduce the specified legislation?


The National Environment Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998), contains specific provisions under section 44 which controls single-use plastic products. The National Environment Management: Waste Act, 2008 (Act No. 59 of 2008), contains specific provisions under sections 17, 18, 28 and 29 to control the disposal of plastic products.

It is a matter of public record that the management of plastics in the world generally and in our own country, is sub-optimal. Consenquently this is an important area to which we must respond if we are to proctect our oceans.

The World Economic Forum and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, observed could be “more plastics that fish (by weight) in the ocean by 2050 if no action is taken immediately”.

The department has initiated a process to review the effectiveness of our policies relating to the management of plastic waste and to consider whether it is necessary to have a new policy direction.

This review includes discussions with the retail, pharmaceutical and cosmetics sectors as well as the paper and packaging industries on ways to combat the use of one time plastics and their disposal management.

We expect to conclude this process within the current financial year. At this point we will make further announcemnets on our approach to this important matter.







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