Wellington Mayor Justin Lester and other local government leaders have welcomed the Government’s decision to phase out single-use plastic shopping bags within a year.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage announced the decision this morning at Wellington’s Lyall Bay beach.
Last year, the Wellington City Council was a driving force behind a nationwide campaign that saw 90 per cent of the country’s mayors unite in a campaign asking the then National-led government to impose a point-of-sale levy on single-use plastic bags.
“Getting rid of the bags is an even better result than we could have hoped for a year later and I’m delighted the new government has listened to what New Zealanders want,” said Justin Lester.
The Wellington Mayor says the move will have significant benefits for councils around the country, who have responsibility for waste management and litter.
“Until now, local councils have borne the cost – both financial and environmental – of single-use plastic bags entering the waste stream. Moving to a ban will significantly reduce that burden.”