Ban on single use plastic now a fact
The ban on single use plastic is now a reality. The waste ordinance for the banning of single use plastic materials and single use shopping bags has been approved. The ordinance is in effect as of April 1st, 2021.
The main goal for implementing the ban is to reduce the amount of waste generated on the island and to create a cleaner environment for inhabitants and visitors.
Stakeholders will be given a reasonable length grace period of two (2) months to use-up their current stock of single used products and a period of six (6) months to use-up all single use shopping bags. After this period elapses all remaining banned items must be destroyed. The Public Entity has agreed to adapt a phase out approach of the now used products. The phase out approach commenced April 1st, 2021 which is the implementation date of the ordinance and ends two to six months, depending on the product.
The list of products that will be restricted are single use shopping bags, plastic straws, plastic stirrers, plastic utensils, plastic plates, plastic cups, plastic soup bowls, plastic cotton swabs, plastic balloon confetti. Also Styrofoam food containers and cups are prohibited.
To facilitate the process, the Public Entity St. Eustatius agrees to distribute ‘free of charge’ alternative materials to registered stakeholders. “This way we allow the stakeholders to sample alternative materials as it relates to quality, durability and size of the alternative materials. It is an effort to assist with their decision making process on which materials to buy,” says Arlene Spanner, Policy Advisor Economic Development at ENI.
The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management of the Netherlands is committed to assist St. Eustatius with the banning of single use plastics. A declaration of intent was signed between the State Secretary for Infrastructure and Water Management and the Public Entity St. Eustatius in July 2019. In December 2019 a decision was taken by the executive council to form an integral work group that would facilitate the planning and execution.