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Davao City, Philippines

DavOr moves to ban plastics, polystyrene

December 02, 2019 - Monday 6:12 PM by Ruth Palo

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DAVAO CITY -- The Provincial Government of Davao Oriental has passed an ordinance that would regulate and eventually phase out single-use plastics and polystyrene products.

Mati City information officer Ben Tesiorna said Mayor Michelle Rabat lauded the 16th Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Davao Oriental for passing the ordinance, saying it is high time the Local Government Unit (LGU) takes the lead in protecting the environment, especially of the aquatic animals that are most affected by the proliferation of plastics in the ocean.

The ordinance was authored by Board Member Louie Rabat and was passed on the third week of November.

Tesiorna said the ordinance came after a 13-meter sperm whale was found dead two weeks ago in Gumasa Beach in Glan, Sarangani due to a single plastic cup lodged at the stomach of the whale.

He said the ordinance aims to shift to sustainable biodegradable materials, including woven bags (bayong), cloth bags (katsa), biodegradable polystyrene, and other similar reusable, biodegradable, and recycled materials.

Tesiorna said those to be banned are plastic bags, clear plastics, plastic straw, plastic stirrers, plastic cutlery, polystyrene products, and helium balloons.

The law will prohibit establishments, food service providers, and ambulant vendors from giving their customers single-use plastic straws, plastic bags, stirrers, cups, spoons and forks, food containers, and clear plastics.

“Business establishments, hotels and restaurants, fast-food outlets, catering services, resorts, market vendors, food kiosks, sari-sari stores and ambulant vendors and households are mandated to strictly follow the said ordinance,” Tesiorna said.

Establishments will get a warning on the first violation, while a fine of P5,000 and 15 days of community service will be imposed on the second violation.

The third offense will lead to cancellation of business permit.

Ambulant vendors, unlicensed sari-sari stores, and market vendors will also be fined and penalized. First offense merits a warning, second offense will get a fine of P3,00 and 15 days of community service, and third offense will lead to confiscation of Items.