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Moscow's War on Plastic Bags

28. September 2009 by Gregg 0 Comments

Joining initiatives in much of Western Europe to reduce the amount of garbage accumulating in major city centers, Moscow city officials, headed by Mayor Yury Luzhkov have unveiled a new plan to push supermarkets into stopping distribution on plastic bags and to charge customers for the use of new, biodegradable bags.


The new bags would decompose in 6-12 months, compared to the 200 year life-span of a regular plastic bag, according to city officials and the money made from the sale would be donated to charity. Many Moscow supermarkets follow the European model of charging customers for plastic bags to encourage re-use of old bags and have largely voiced their support for the new plan.


Initiatives like this have been introduced in Moscow previously, with linen bags being offered to customers in place of the plastic bags. This proved extremely unpopular and was largely viewed as a failure.


With the production of the new biodegradable bags promising increased employment and several businesses around Moscow declaring their readiness to produce the bags, city officials hope that the new initiative will prove more successful.