EDITOR, The Tribune
The Bahamas National Trust joins Bahamians and Bahamian NGOs in welcoming the Environmental Protection (Control of Plastic Pollution) Bill, 2019.
When passed, the bill will prohibit single-use plastic food ware – such as Styrofoam cups, plates, and other food containers, as well as plastic knives, forks, spoons, and straws. It will also prohibit the release of balloons into the atmosphere.
Plastic waste is a scourge of our environment and these are essential measures to help reduce the amount of plastic entering our landfills – and stop the menace to marine life.
It is estimated that by the year 2050, there will be more plastic pollution in the sea than fish, unless we take measures to stop such destruction. Single-use plastics litter our landscapes and find their way into the ocean which is perhaps the area where they do the most damage. Plastic ingestion by sea turtles, whales and fish, causes death to these magnificent sea creatures already teetering on the edge of extinction.
“Throughout our work protecting the Bahamas National Parks, there is nothing more disheartening than to see the volume of plastic waste that ends up on our reefs, beaches and in mangroves and tidal creeks,” said Lakeshia Anderson, BNT Director of Parks.
Once this legislation is in place, we hope Bahamians see just how unnecessary so much of the plastic we use in daily life has been. We feel that they will be proud as an island nation, to be contributing to the global reduction of plastic in the environment
“We hope this will spur Bahamians on to think of ways in which they can minimise the waste they produce. This includes bringing their own bags to carry home shopping, and avoiding using items that are only meant to be used once then cast aside to end up in a landfill or floating in the sea.”
The BNT feels these simple actions can make a real difference to the environment right here on our doorstep and will send a message to the global community that we value our marine environment, which is integral to our history and culture. We applaud the steps taken by the business community to prepare for the ban and look forward to partnering with companies looking to support the reduction of waste in our landfills.
“At the Bahamas National Trust, we have always been at the forefront of protecting the natural beauty of our nation, and we will continue to champion this effort to control the impact of plastics.
“We often say it’s better in The Bahamas,” said Eric Carey, BNT Executive Director “Now it’s our turn to do better for The Bahamas.
BNT congratulates the Ministry of Environment and Housing for bringing forward this important legislation that again places the Bahamas at the forefront of environmental consciousness in the region. The BNT has committed to working with the Ministry to execute education programmes to build awareness and help secure support for this important national initiative”.
THE BAHAMAS NATIONAL TRUST
August 19, 2019.