Bali, one of the world’s best known holiday destinations and known for its beautiful rice terraces endless beaches, amazing surfing and diving spots has called a stop to all single use plastic usage.
The growing environmental pollution this island has endured over the past years has taken a toll and this new policy is the right step in a cleaner and more environmental conscious future for tourists and inhabitants alike.
So how did this movement come into motion and this ban into effect?
Already for the past 6-8 years a number of growing environmental active groups kept raising awareness towards the locals, the tourists as well as the government bodies.
Then finally in 2018 the governor of Bali, Wayan Koster, implemented the law on December 21st to give all business owners a six months grace period to find new alternatives for their plastic bags, straws and polystyrenes. The policy went consequently into effect on the 23rd June 2019.
What does this ban include and who will be affected?
All venues that are operating in the Bali hospitality industry including restaurants, bars and cafes are now incentivised to offer alternatives to their customers including paper, bamboo or metal/steel straws. Then when it comes to bags now all retail outlets including supermarkets, shops and local businesses are no longer allowed to hand out plastic bags but should engage in re-usable bags and/or encourage their customers to bring their own bags for their purchases.
Needless to say that any biodegradable alternatives to plastic are been looked into by the industry.
What is Bali trying to achieve with this ban?
According to the Waste Management Taskforce, Bali produces more than 300.000 tons of plastic every year and as there is no island wide recycling system in place a lot of this plastic ends up in rivers washed down to villages and beaches. All of us who ever went for an early beach walk around the Bali beaches can see the plastic and rubbish that went ashore overnight. Introducing this new policy, the island aims to reduce 70% of the marine pollution and one day we might get our clean Bali beaches back.