South Australia's single-use plastic ban imposed

BEGUN: Legislation to ban single-use plastics in SA will expand to to include more throw away items. Photo: Shutterstock
BEGUN: Legislation to ban single-use plastics in SA will expand to to include more throw away items. Photo: Shutterstock

From today, March 1, South Australia's historic ban on single-use plastics items starts, with more throw away items expected to join the list.

Prohibited items for sale and distribution include plastic straws, plastic cutlery and plastic stirrers.

According to the state government, businesses who breach the laws could face a $315 fines and anyone found distributing prohibited products could be fined $1000.

The ban is the first of its kind across Australia and follows legislation passed Parliament last year.

Importantly, the restriction responds to single-use plastic products limited in their number of use, often thrown away and usually result in litter and waste, which are harmful to wildlife, including marine life.

Environment and Water David Speirs, says the state is leading the national when it comes to environmental issues.

"We are the first state in the country to take this action and from tomorrow plastic drinking straws, cutlery and stirrers will be banned from sale, supply and distribution in South Australia," he said.

He said that the legislation will be expanded to include polystyrene cups, bowls, plates and clam-shell containers, and oxo-degradable plastic products to be banned in a years' time.

"We will continue to consider more products such as takeaway coffee cups, plastic barrier bags and other takeaway food service items as market demand increases and other sustainable alternatives become available," the Minister said.

The legislation does not prevent members of the community from bringing their own straws to cafes, and any business can choose to supply individual single-use plastic drinking straws on request, due to disability or medical needs.

Prescribed businesses including pharmacies, local government offices, charities, and medical, dental and care facilities are able to sell and supply packs of straws for these purposes.

Bioplastics, like PLA (Polylactic Acid), that can be labelled compostable, are also banned as these can only be composted under strict industrial conditions.

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This story Single-use plastic ban begins first appeared on The Murray Valley Standard.