The government of Australia has signalled plans to address the issue of plastic packaging pollution after its prolonged voluntary industry-led schemes, according to the Australian Green party, failed to bring about any results.
The initiative is aimed at regulating and enforcing national packaging and waste reduction targets to increase recycling, as well as supporting a circular economy and reducing overall plastic waste.
It will see modifications to Australia’s recycling and waste reduction laws, with a plan to put in place a nationwide scheme by 2025.
The initiative was revealed after Greens senator and waste and recycling spokesperson Peter Whish-Wilson questioned the national government’s stance on the issue.
Wilson said: “The failure of the federal government to hold big plastic producers and polluters to account for the mess they make has dragged on long enough.
“It’s a relief to see the federal environment department signal a long overdue move to establish a legally enforceable producer responsibility scheme under federal laws.
“For years the Greens, waste advocacy groups, and the recycling industry have called for the government to regulate strict national waste reduction and recycling targets.”
Furthermore, Australian senior executive for the government’s environmental department Kate Lynch informed senators about the government’s effort to launch new mandatory regulations that are anticipated to soon be enforced across the country, reported the Australian Associated Press.
In a hearing, Lynch was quoted by the AAP as saying: “The government is pursuing regulation – so it will be mandatory new packaging regulation – that we hope to apply countrywide.”