I first came across the issue of plastic waste when I was writing my ESS IA in class. Before my in-depth investigation, I had dismissed the problem of plastic waste and recycling in Hong Kong as a whole. It wasn’t something that bothered me because I simply didn’t see it: the streets were clean, my school had recycling bins and generally promoted sustainability and I generally abided the three rules: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. However, once I uncovered the statistics, I was shocked by both the sheer mass of plastic waste being disposed of at landfills daily and the lack of public awareness.
Therefore, I decided to write a report on the PSB Levy (50 cents charged for one plastic shopping bag, with exceptions for things such as bags used for food hygiene purposes), which was one of the first governmental actions to reduce plastic waste. Through surveys and analyses of the HK EPD’s data, I drew the conclusion that the PSB had a significant effect on the amount of plastic bags disposed, and hence the amount of plastic waste, and that the public was only generally aware of the issue of plastic waste.
Drawing on my first point establishes a solid groundwork for this petition. If a 50 cents PSB Levy has a significant effect on the amount of plastic bags in Hong Kong, then to tackle the problem of plastic waste, shouldn’t the PSB Levy be augmented? 1 dollar may not seem like a lot of money in the short run, however, it will gradually discourage consumers to purchase plastic bags and will encourage them to bring their own bags in the long run. This economic incentive will both promote environmental friendliness and reduce the number of plastic bags. People should support this petition because though you may not realise it, plastic waste is a pressing and growing problem and it is our responsibility, as Hong Kong citizens, to be active in tackling these issues.