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‘Plastic-bag’ law in Israel slashed bag waste in 2017

Officials said the new regulation led to an 80 percent drop in the use of single-use grocery bags and saved more than 7,091 tons of non-recyclable plastic in just one year.

Shoppers in Osher Ad Supermarket branch in Talpiot, Jerusalem, on Nov. 12, 2017. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.
Shoppers in Osher Ad Supermarket branch in Talpiot, Jerusalem, on Nov. 12, 2017. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.

The Environmental Protection Ministry lauded the success of a “plastic bag law” that has led to a drastic drop in the use of plastic grocery bags by Israeli consumers.

A law went into effect on Jan. 1, 2017, which required supermarkets to charge customers 10 agurot (2.8 cents) per plastic bag. Consumers were encouraged to buy large, multi-use bags for shopping, which were also to be made available at grocery stores, and thereby avoid paying the small additional cost.

Officials said the new regulation led to an 80 percent drop in the use of single-use grocery bags and saved more than 7,091 tons of non-recyclable plastic in just one year. Plastic-bag usage accounted for approximately 7 percent of Israeli waste prior to the legislation, according to the ministry.

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