Single use plastics are now banned in Iloilo province

Gov. Arthur Defensor Jr. signed an ordinance regulating the use of single-use plastics and styrofoam food containers and recommending native baskets and other biodegradable and recyclable materials as alternatives.

Business establishments, market vendors, food kiosks, sari-sari stores, ambulant vendors, and other similar businesses will not be allowed to give plastic bags and/or sando bags to customers.

Restaurants are also prohibited from using plastic containers, drinking straw and the like but are mandated to give proper utensils –stainless or metal– and drinking glass to dine-in customers. 

Native woven bags or basket made of buri or pandan, bamboo strips or rattan, paper box, cloth bag, eco-bags should be available to all retail establishments.

Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) senior environment management specialist Mitzi Peñaflorida is expecting the full support and compliance from the local government units.

“Single-use plastics include straws, stirrers and plastic bottles we throw away after using. They end up polluting our bodies of water,” Peñaflorida added.

She said the PENRO is set to conduct a wide information dissemination about the new ordinance. She also encouraged LGUs to create local task forces to monitor the implementation of the ordinance.

Violators face the following penalties:

* 1st offense – fine of P1,000 and confiscation of plastic bags

* 2nd offenses – fine of P3,000 and confiscation of plastic bags

* 3rd offense – fine of P5,000, confiscation of plastic bags and/or six months imprisonment at the discretion of the court, and revocation of business permit or license. (RJ Espartinez)