Islamabad: Plastic bags will be replaced with paper, cloth and jute bags, says Minister of State for Climate Change Ms Zartaj Gul. While briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change, the state minister said that banning plastic bags will not affect the business or employment of plastic bags manufacturers. Rather, a new industry will replace it, which would be eco-friendly and more labor-intensive.
Advisor to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam told the senators that Indus River is the world’s second most polluted river because of plastic bags. He added that even human beings are severely affected by this menace, as every Pakistani consumes an amount of plastic equivalent to the size of a credit card.
He added that plastic bags will be banned in Islamabad from 14 August and the provinces will be informed about the policy measures. However, after the 18th amendment, the environment has become a provincial matter and has to be dealt with as per provincial legislation.
Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change Chairperson Senator Sitara Ayaz proposed that a technical committee should be formed to address the issue of industry shutdown and potential unemployment while ensuring ban on the use of plastic bags.
The senate committee was briefed that the climate ministry may consider the Kenyan Model for replacing plastic bags with biodegradable bags made from plants.