A group identifying itself as Alliance for a Cleaner Earth sent me a press release about their own initiative against the improper disposal of waste materials specifically those made with plastic. The group is basically pushing for a plastics pollution tax.
Remember Ondoy, stop plastics pollution
A group of concerned citizens has come out urging the national and local governments to prioritize the speedy implementation of measures that will mitigate the occurrence of another Ondoy flooding disaster and solve the regular occurrence of flooding in various parts of Metro Manila.
The Alliance for a Cleaner Earth (ACE), a group of outdoor sports enthusiasts and environmentalists, calls for measures to stop plastic pollution which it sees as a major cause of the regular flooding experienced in Metro Manila and solid waste pollution in all parts of the country – from beaches to mountains, from creeks and rivers to seas all over the archipelago.
The Ondoy disaster last year, which will mark its first anniversary in a few weeks, is a wake-up that should have been heeded as plastic trash was found to be major cause – and continues to be a major cause — of blocked drainages and floodways.
ACE calls on the government to adopt and enforce measures that will drastically reduce the amount of plastic materials both at its source as one of several Climate Change adaptation
Among the many measures the group seeks the government to create, adopt and enforce the imposition of a plastics pollution tax to be levied on all products that are packaged in plastic, similar to a proposed plastic tax in Ghana where both producers and consumers of products packed in plastic share the burden of the tax.
Such a measure would be an expansion of a plastics tax bill recently filed in Congress covering plastic bottles, pouches, sachets, wrappers, etc.
House Bill 127 or an “AN ACT IMPOSING AN EXCISE TAX, TO BE KNOWN AS ENVIRONMENTAL LEVY ON THE USE OF PLASTIC BAGS IN SHOPS, SUPERMARKETS, SERVICE STATIONS, STORES AND/OR SALES OUTLETS, CREATING THE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION SUPPORT FUND, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES”. HB 127 seeks to levy a tax in the amount of Two Pesos and Fifty Centavos (Php 2.50 or US Dollar .06) for every plastic bag used at the point of sale of goods or products. Only plastic bags used as original packaging of products will be (sic) excepted from the proposed tax.”
The plastics pollution tax would increase the price of goods packaged in plastic, thereby forcing consumers to buy less products packaged in plastic and force producers to seek alternative means of distributing their products.
Moreover, it should lead to a creation of a fund that would be used for the retrieval and proper disposal of plastic wastes.