DENR backs ordinance banning single-use plastics in Boracay
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has applauded the initiative of the local government unit (LGU) of Malay in Aklan province to ban single-use plastics in Boracay and the rest of the municipality.
Municipal Ordinance No. 386, Series of 2018, which was just recently issued by the Malay LGU, prohibits the use of single-use or disposable plastic items by hotels, resorts, restaurants and establishments in the accommodation business.
DENR Undersecretary for Solid Waste Management and LGU Concerns Benny Antiporda said the single-use plastic ban is a major boost to government efforts to fight plastic pollution and its toxic impacts on humans, wildlife, waterways and oceans, and the environment.
To recall, DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu said in June that a ban on single-use plastics would help ease the garbage problem on the world-famous island and prevent further degradation of its environment.
“Single-use plastics, particularly those used in packaging, have been identified as a contributing factor to Boracay’s mounting waste problem, not only on land but in surrounding waters,” Antiporda said.
“The DENR is willing to provide Malay with any assistance in the implementation of this ban and all its other programs to manage solid waste,” he added.
According to him, Malay can become a model not only for Aklan or the entire Panay Island, but also to other LGUs with ecotourism sites.
The ban covers disposable plastic products like toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes, shaving razors, shower caps, sachets of shampoo or conditioner, liquid body soaps, combs, bottled water, straws, spoons, forks, knives, and sachets of coffee, sugar and creamer.
As eco-friendly alternatives, establishments are encouraged to use items such as reusable or refillable dispensers and metal utensils.
The penalties for violators are as follows: stern warning and a fine of P2,000 for first offense; confiscation of single-use plastics and a fine of P2,500 for second offense; and cancellation of business permit to operate for third offense.