Romanian Environment Min Declares War To Plastic Bags

Romanian environment minister Korodi Attila will propose a law making plastic bags, available free of charge at stores, target for "drastic" taxation. This would get vendors to use alternative bags, made of environmentally friendly materials, for which there will not be any taxes.

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Romanian Environment Min Declares War To Plastic Bags

However, the Ministry does not have the legal means to completely forbid the circulation of plastic bags, thus vendors might choose to sell plastic bags, rather than go with the ecological ones. The income from the plastic bags would cover the tax.
In theory, a Romanian citizen uses 250 such bags in one year, while the duration of use averages 20 minutes, Korodi said, quoting a study conducted by the Ministry. This means that the replacement of the plastic bags would not affect commerce.
"We hope that taxation would discourage operators using such bags and it would make them turn to environmentally friendly wrapping, following the example of Ireland, the only country in the EU where this system is set up," Korodi said.
The law would take shape somewhere around Spring 2008, and, according to the calculations of the minister, it would generate effects in 2009.
Biodegradable wrapping costs 5% more than the polluting ones. The minister also considered a transition period for the application of the law, to avoid having its effects recoil on store customers, who would soon pay for the bags.
According to Korodi, Romania does not yet have biodegradable plastic bag factories. This is a special plastic, with a modified chemical composition, which makes it decompose in justa few months, at temperatures around 30 degrees Celsius, as opposed to the one hundred years it takes for a non-biodegradable bag to decompose.

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