4 things you didn't know about Plastic Bags & the NEMA ban - Business Ideas For You

4 things you didn't know about Plastic Bags & the NEMA ban

Plastic bags banned in Kenya

 What type of plastic bags are being banned?

The NEMA ban only covers prohibition of carrier bags and flat bags being used for packaging. Carrier bags have handles e.g previous branded supermarket packaging bags while flat bags do not have handles e.g. refrigeration colorless bags.

It does NOT cover the plastic bag packaging of  goods such as bread, sweets, soaps among others. Therefore, you have nothing to worry about when walking around with goods packaged in plastic bags since the ban, for now, does not take effect on consumer goods.

Why has NEMA banned these bags?

You have probably heard that this is the third attempt to implement this ban in a ten-year period. What you might not know is that this ban was gazetted on 28th February, 2017 allowing for a 6 month ‘Grace Period’.

To achieve one of the 2030 vision goals of an eco-friendly environment, most if not all non-biodegradable wastes have to be done away with.

In a month, Kenyans consume an estimated 24 million plastic bags. These bags, in most cases are unusable after the first use since they easily tear and puncture. Additionally, they are light thus they are easily transported by wind making the waste management almost impossible even to an environment-conscious citizen.

These bags then clog drainage systems and often suffocate animals,  not to mention the unpleasant look of litter they create on roadsides and shorelines

What makes plastic bags non-biodegradable

Plastic bags have been in existence for just over 60 years and are manufactured using oil and natural gas.

They take an estimated maximum of 1000 years to decompose. To get these stats right, assuming a paper bag was used and disposed off in the year 1050 AD, we’d still have it’s remains here in the 21st century.

Yes, that’s right, we’d have litter dating back before Slave Trade in the Sub-Sahara. It’d probably be in the museums, haha 😃. Just that this time, no special preservation would be required.

They never fully biodegrade thus they remain in the environment as small particles; almost forever.

Burying plastic bags does not help, at all

Plastics are not biodegradable. However, there are researchers that are working to provide a form of biodegradable plastic bags. Even with these, burying would be no good way to dispose them off.

Usually, nothing really biodegrades in a landfill. However, if there was a possibility that these plastics could break down in this oxygen-free environment, they’d emit methane(CH4), a greenhouse gas that is 23 times more potent than CO2. 
This  would be a perfect scenario of jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire.

That being said, I strongly recommend that we embrace the NEMA ban and work together to create a better, clean environment for ourselves and the generations to come. 

Because cleaner is better

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4 things you didn't know about Plastic Bags & the NEMA ban 4 things you didn't know about Plastic Bags & the NEMA ban Reviewed by Frank Migici on August 28, 2017 Rating: 5

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