Malta is about to take the single-use plastic problem head-on, with the government set to outright ban the sale and distribution of plastic bags, cutlery, straws, and plates from 2022.
This first phase of a plastic-free plan for the island will see the importation of the four single-use plastic products will stop by 1st January 2021.
Revealed in this year’s budget, the ban follows the EU approving a similar ban earlier this year, which also ensures that plastic bottles be made of 90% recycled content by 2029.
Meanwhile, a grant will be made available for shops looking to establish their own green corner and give people the opportunity to shop plastic-free. Capped at €3,000, the grant will cover 50% of the expenses incurred.
Many supermarkets across the globe and in Malta have already started taking steps to reduce their waste production, with Valyou already providing customers with plastic-free grocery shopping.
The government’s plan to have bottle-return machines in shops will also be up and running by the end of the year.
In a budget described by the Prime Minister as “climate-focused”, the government rolled out 25 measures that focus on the circular economy and sustainability.
The most notable of the proposals is the government’s plan to introduce a national strategy for carbon neutrality, referred to be Muscat in a speech yesterday. With a goal to be completely carbon neutral by 2050, a change over date for petrol and diesel cars into electric will also be revealed then.
However, from January, the government has announced plans to introduce a preferential tariff for people owning an electric car, set at 12.95c/MW.
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