Caribbean

Jamaica Government to Strengthen Law Applicable to Breaches of Single-use Plastics Ban

Minister in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Daryl Vaz

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Monday December 24, 2018 – Minister in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Daryl Vaz says Government is looking to strengthen aspects of the law applicable where breaches of the ban on single-use plastics, which takes effect in the New Year, may be committed.

While
noting fines ranging from J$50,000 (US$389) to over J$1 million (US$7,794) for
breaches of stipulations under the Natural Resources Conservation Authority and
Trade Acts, he contended that, “too often [in several instances] we are using
archaic outdated legislation and laws that are totally inadequate in terms of
the consequences through fines and imprisonment, and whatever else”.

“We
are looking at that… [and] I can assure the public that there will be teeth [in
the law],” he added.

Come
January 1, the Government will commence imposition of the ban on the
importation, manufacture, distribution and use of specific categories of
plastic packaging material.

They include single-use plastic carrier/shopping bags; expanded polystyrene, commonly called Styrofoam; and plastic drinking straws, which are often improperly discarded, causing significant harm to the environment.

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