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Italy banned non-biodegradable PE bags

January 27/2012

(Plasteurope) -- A year after Italy became the first European country to ban non-biodegradable PE bags. Regulations as to the permitted levels of degradability are still controversial. As retailers were permitted to use up their stocks of non-biodegradable bags up to the end of 2011, the switch evidently is not yet visible. But with former EU commissioner Mario Monti now in the prime ministers seat, it appears that attempts by plastics industry groupings to torpedo the legislation have definitely failed.


For its own purposes, Italy will adopt the EU degradability standard EN 13432, part of the European Packaging Directive EC 94/62. This specifies, among other things, that the material must break down by at least 90% in less than six months. Some bag manufacturers and organisations are critical. Part of the trade union sector complains that the legislation will lead to many job losses, while others argue that it will benefit plans to set up a green plastics hub at the former Vinyls Italia site of Porto Torres in Sardinia. Plastics converters who produce bags contend that the cost of retooling equipment will be prohibitive.

In mid-January, environmental organisations called on the European Commission (EC) to finally move toward regulating plastic bags. The high level of support shown by EU private citizens for such a move - 53% participating in an EU query strongly favoured an outright ban - means that the Commission will be under pressure to take action, the organisations said in a statement.

 

mrcplast.com

Author:Anna Larionova
Tags:PE.
Category:General News
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