In June, Indonesia lawmakers will debate a proposal aimed at curbing plastic waste through a 1.4-U.S. cent tax on plastic containers. The legislation comes after recent flooding left Jakarta with tons of plastic bags, bottles and other waste piled in some sections of the city.
The Wall Street Journal has the story.
As Indonesia’s economy grows and incomes rise, its 255 million people are generating more trash than ever. The country is expected to produce about 67 million tons of trash in 2019, according to the environment ministry—5% more than in 2014. Of that, plastics will account for about 15%. Last year, Indonesia was the second-largest source of plastic garbage found in the world’s oceans after China, according to a study led by the University of Georgia.
If approved, the new tax could take effect this year, starting with plastic drink bottles and eventually expanding to plastic packaging for food, said Nasruddin Djoko Surjono, head of the ministry’s tax and customs policy division.
Such a tax could make Indonesia a pioneer in the developing world, where these types of levies are rare. Some parts of Australia and Canada require consumers to pay deposits on containers that can be reclaimed if they are returned to the vendor or a recycling depot.