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No more plastic waste

Government introduced the first stage of a ban on plastic packaging

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In April 2007, the Chinese government introduced the first stage of a ban on plastic packaging, meaning that the use of disposable plastic bags and tableware in supermarkets, department stores, fast food chains, restaurants, and convenience stores has been banned.

Department stores and fast food chains were willing to cooperate: McDonald's switched its styrofoam cups to thick paper cups; major department stores now provide cardboard boxes instead of plastic bags; supermarket began to charge for plastic bags...

What's interesting about this is the ease and enthusiasm with which most of the population have taken to the new legislation (after some initial complaints from the plastic industry), and also the general feeling from the larger department stores and restaurant chains that this represents as much of an economic bonus as an environmental one.

Although China still has a huge number of pressing environmental problems, ranging from heavy pollution of its waterways to the ever-present smog that collects in the bowl of mountains in which Beijing sits, it's refreshing to see the first steps towards environmental policies taking hold.

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Hi Zhiyue!
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