Single-use plastics have a devastating impact globally on animals, people and the environment.
We are joining the call to the Government of New Zealand to phase out single-use plastic bags and reduce damage to the animals and the environment.
Here's what to do:
Sign the petition to call on the NZ Government to implement a nationwide ban on single-use plastic bags.
View the letter that JGINZ and Greenpeace NZ have presented to the NZ government - It is co-supported by Dr Goodall, the Right Honourable Helen Clark, local councils, corporations, non-governmental and community organisations - To ask the New Zealand government to put in place a regulatory ban on single-use plastic bags.
Most importantly, make changes in your own life to reduce your impacts on the planet!
New Zealanders use around 1.6 billion single-use plastic bags every year. In general they are made from a non-renewable resource and despite the best efforts of a growing number of environmentally aware shoppers who refuse plastic bags at the check-out the light weight bags still make their way into the environment where they pose significant harm to marine life.
Plastic bags in the marine environment contribute to an estimated 100,000 marine mammal deaths per year. They create a risk of entanglement and turtles and whales have been found to eat them, mistaking them as a regular food source. Plastic bags are also problematic for humans as, over time in the marine environment, they degrade into micro-plastic which attract persistent organic pollutants and enter the food-chain once they have been consumed by fish. It’s estimated that if we keep polluting at the current rate, there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean within 33 years.
Plastic bags are used on average for less than 12 minutes - Is the convenience really worth the life of a marine creature?
Governments all over the world have taken action to ban the sale of lightweight single-use plastic bags. The Bangladesh government was the first to do so in 2002, imposing a total ban on the bag. Such a ban has also been applied in countries such as Rwanda, Senegal, Kenya, Bangladesh, China, Myanmar, countries in Western Europe and North America. Many States in Australia have legislation banning single-use plastic bags.
In the last year some large retail brands in New Zealand have committed to banning the provision of single-use plastic bags. - We thank supporters who signed our petition to one of the large supermarket chains, as it was your voice that encouraged them to move to a ban.
The new New Zealand government has also recently made commitments to significantly reduce the waste we are generating in this country. New Zealand’s current position of the 10th worst nation for creating urban waste is indeed shameful. It is time for New Zealand to join the large number of countries that have already banned these bags.
Lets say Bye Bye Plastic Bags! Ban the bag!
"Join us! We are driving the Bye Bye Plastic Bag New Zealand campaign. If you are a school, community, regional group in New Zealand taking actions to try to make New Zealand plastic bag free - we would love to hear from you! If we can join together, use the work that you are undertaking to inspire others, spread the word, in person, on social media and discuss the issue together we can make a change!"