Tokyo, June 4 (Jiji Press)–The Diet, Japan’s parliament, on Friday enacted a bill to reduce plastic waste by cutting the use of plastic products and promoting their recycling.
The bill was approved unanimously by the House of Councillors, the upper chamber of the Diet, following its passage at the House of Representatives, the lower chamber, last month. It will go into force as early as April 2022.
The new law will oblige retailers, restaurants and hotels to reduce the use of disposable plastic products such as straws and spoons.
Specific measures will be decided by October this year. Possible options include a shift to products made from paper, wood or plant-based or recycled plastic, charging customers for using disposable plastic products and giving reward points to customers who decline to use plastic items.
The government will issue an instruction or an order to businesses not doing enough to reduce plastic waste. Noncompliance will be subject to a fine of up to 500,000 yen.
The law will allow municipalities to collect a wide range of plastic items, including stationary products and hangers, for recycling.