Straw ban well-supported by trade: DSPA

The catering industry has expressed “positivity, acceptance and willingness” on the previously announced ban on single-use plastic straws, said Tam Wai Man, director of the Environmental Protection Bureau (DSPA), at the sidelines of a recent award ceremony.
The Executive Dispatch announcing the ban on straws issued last month. It also announced the ban on plastic stirrers.
Tam stressed that this does not imply a ban on all plastic straws. Only non-biodegradable straws are concerned. He added that given the existence of substitutes in the market, the government finds it the right time to levy the ban.
As per the government’s estimation, the city imports an average of 16 million straws and 2.9 million stirrers each year.
Although an increase in costs is expected, Tam foresees it to be limited. He added that in the long term, the costs may even decrease.
Tam disclosed that 15 plastic bottle collection machines will be added, bringing the total to 58 in the city, and collection of metal cans will also be introduced on these machines.
In October, the four Happy Environment Centers, which are DSPA-operated recyclables collection points, will start accepting used clothing pieces. The DSPA will work with charities to process the collected used clothes.
On the other hand, the DSPA held an award ceremony to highlight schools and supermarkets that had made efforts in helping with environmental protection. This year, 35 out of 51 schools and 33 in 118 supermarkets have won awards.
Escola Choi Nong Chi Tai, Escola Fong Chong da Taipa and Keang Peng Secondary School won the top Platinum Award this year for their five-year environmental protection education efforts.
Meanwhile, San Miu Supermarket (Trust Legend Branch) has won the Gold Award. All supermarket winners were awarded to highlight their work in lessening packaging, saving energy, among others. AL

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